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By Matt Sandy
Last updated at 1:22 AM on 27th September 2009

It is the latest craze to give daredevil participants a huge adrenaline rush – racing space-age tricycle ‘pods’ at high speed.

Now, a group of teenagers is preparing to travel to the other side of the world to become the first Britons to take part in a special 24-hour race.

The event in Australia would be challenging enough for anyone – but it is even more remarkable for the 15 and 16-year-olds because they have special needs, with conditions such as Asperger’s syndrome and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. 

Some of the pupils and teachers from Hailey Hall School who are preparing for the gruelling race in Australia
The pod squad: Some of the pupils and teachers from Hailey Hall School who are preparing for the gruelling race in Australia

Teachers at Hailey Hall School in Hertfordshire believe the trip will be a life-changing experience for the pupils, many of whom have never travelled abroad before.

But they need to raise £20,000 to pay for flights and insurance – and are appealing to generous Mail on Sunday readers for help.

The team, called Hailey’s Comet ,will take it in turns to race their one-man ‘pod’, complete with lights and a speedometer, at speeds of up to 37mph around a Tarmac track for 24 hours starting at 1.30pm on a Saturday.

The team of eight – plus two reserves and four school staff – will compete against dozens of other schools from around the world in the RACV Energy Breakthrough race in Maryborough, Victoria, in November. 

A tricycle pod which competed last year
Wheely good: A tricycle pod which competed last year. The vehicle can reach speeds of up to 37mph

Teacher Trish Turner, 43, who is organising the trip, said: ‘When we told the boys they simply put their heads in their hands as they could not believe it. We are very proud to be the first British team going out there.

Read Article in Full:  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1216438/Haileys-Comets-The-pupils-heading-Down-Under-race-lifetime.html?ITO=1490



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