Local students will be taking part in a statewide challenge on fuel efficiency later this month.

Coming up on Monday April 28th, students from Forest Park, Jasper, South Spencer, and Southridge High Schools will be taking part in the 19th annual Indiana Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education Alliance Super Mileage Challenge. The challenge will be held at Lucas Oil Raceway park on Indianapolis’ west side starting at 8:30 am on the 28th.

In this competition, students build their own cars under the supervision of a school faculty member. Students are responsible for designing and building the cars as well as for raising any and all funding needed for their project.

Engines are provided by Briggs and Stratton Corporation, but all other parts have to be bought by the team or donated by event sponsors. The challenge is sponsored by Vincennes University, the schools of technology at both Ball State and Purdue Universities, and Lucas Oil Raceway Park.

Now there are 31 cars in all entered in this year’s challenge. The cars represent 23 Indiana high schools. 2 cars from Greenville High School in Tennessee are also competing this year. The cars are broken up into four classes. These are stock, new stock, unlimited, and exhibition. 7 cars each will run in the stock and new stock classes. 15 cars will compete in the unlimited class while 2 will compete in the exhibition class. Cars in the unlimited class are among the most economically built in the world. The average mileage: more than 1 thousand miles per gallon. This year’s field will seek to break the 15 hundred mile per gallon barrier.

To be eligible, a school has to submit a detailed technical proposal covering all aspects of designing and constructing the car. The proposal thus ensures that students will be exposed to scientific principles that go into high mileage and technology of car building.