Students set sail in annual cardboard, duct tape boat races

By Kelsey VoyerIn front, Syndey Hickmott and in back, Jordan Brady

Staff Writer

Duct tape, cardboard and a swimming pool were key elements of a recent physics project that was all about staying dry.

On Monday, about a dozen Brandon High School students from Lesley Hildebrand’s physics class raced boats in a lesson on buoyancy, team work and speed.

Classmates created their watercrafts in about two days, grabbed a paddle and ventured across the swimming pool. The challenge was no match for the Blackhawks mariners as only one of the eight boats filled with water and sank.

The student crew of the good ship “SS Rowe,” which included Blake Rowe, Dusty Dickens and Brendan O’Shea—covered the 100 meters in record time of 58.8 seconds.

“We put a lot of effort and hours into our boat to make sure that we would not sink by using a lot of duct tape and building it in a way that would help us win,” said Dickens.

The “Hot Mess Express”—built by Sarah Abbott, Xavier Ortiz, Brennan Swix, covered the pool with a time of 64 seconds good enough for second place.

“We all had a lot of fun building our boat,” said Swix. “Our idea was to make our boat as big as it could be. In the pool, we didn’t really know what to expect, because we went first. We started off slow and picked up on the final stretch and our plan for turning around worked great.”

Each boat was required to carry two students.Duct tape could be used to cover only the seams of the boat.


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