A team of students has overcome significant disadvantages in order to claim two national prizes in the school's 4x4 Land Rover Challenge.
Confronted with challenges in coding, engineering, design and construction, the team from Wagga Christian College were tasked with building an all-terrain model four-wheel drive.
Over two days in Sydney last week, the team's 3D-printed model car was subjected to a range of driving challenges, that included navigating tunnels, suspension-testing bumps, driving up a-frame structures, and the infamous rope bridge.
"We were the only team that successfully completed the course, no-one else got the rope bridge," said year 10 student Jye Hefren.
Year eight student Caleb Hefren did the majority of the driving during the course, but each student confronted one leg of the journey themselves.
"All the other groups didn't get through the rope bridge, but we got it in one go," Caleb said.
This was the team's first year in the competition too, which left them at a significant disadvantage against the others who had mounted the course in previous years.
"The judges were very impressed, they said it usually takes three years for a team to get good at it," said Amy Combs, year 9 student and team manager.
Theirs was also the only team to include students from years seven to 10.
"Most of the other teams will take a group that's all from year 10, or year 9," Amy said.
"We decided to do it differently so that the older could mentor the younger ones, and so that when they're our age they won't be going into it cold turkey."
The decision meant that year seven student Jack Graham was the youngest competitor on the track.
Ahead of the competition, Jack designed the aesthetic and functional components of the car's body.
"It was pretty awesome to see it all working on the track," Jack said.
Additional to the age differences, the team also sat at a disadvantage in the mechanical working of their vehicle.
"A lot of other groups had four-wheel steering, but we ran out of time [in designing the vehicle] so we only had two-wheel driving," Caleb said.
Despite the odds sitting ever against them, the team walked away from the competition with both the Best On Track award and the Best Newcomers prize.
Having mastered the national contest, the team will now prepare for world domination.
"Our next step will be analysing what we did well and what we can improve so that next year we might prepare for the world challenge," Amy said.