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Monday 24 April 2017

Santa Pod Raceway has partnered with Bedford College to launch a pioneering new initiative to benefit the special-needs community. A pilot scheme comprising two elements will find Santa Pod providing workplace experience to selected students.


The first element unfolded on a recent weekday when Santa Pod displayed a Top Fuel Dragster on Bedford College’s campus. The display enabled students to view and examine at close quarters the most powerful type of racing machine in world motorsport – capable of generating 10,000 brake horsepower and reaching 300mph in just four seconds. A fortunate few were even able to squeeze into the tight confines of the car’s cockpit.

The programme’s second element began over Easter weekend when selected members of the student community attend Santa Pod’s Festival Of Power and shadowed members of the venue’s staff to experience the diversity of work involved in conducting a large-scale public event.

Santa Pod’s Commercial Manager, Caroline Holden, explains: “Despite our Northamptonshire postcode, Santa Pod Raceway is a Bedfordshire business, and we are always keen to pursue worthwhile initiatives that will benefit our home county. We were delighted when Bedford College first contacted us to explore the possibilities of such a programme and we hope that, as it develops, it will provide significant value to the College and its special-needs community. It’s a rare opportunity for the students but we also think it might offer an interesting and valuable experience to our staff members, enabling them perhaps to cast a fresh light on the work they do.”

The initiative was the brainchild of Bedford College’s Supported Employment Co-ordinator, Gareth Scorer, who says: “When I approached Santa Pod with a very ambitious idea that combined a visit from the raceway and a final work experience project where a number of students will have the opportunity to work at the Festival of Power, I never imagined just how successful the visit would be. The students were fascinated by the dragster, and the raceway were very supportive in making this ambitious project come alive.

"Those students who were selected to work at the Festival of Power were extremely excited, and felt very privileged to be given this opportunity.  I anticipate forging a long term relationship with the raceway where we can continue to develop a range of projects that will enhance what Santa Pod already offer as well as supporting our students to gain valuable work skills. ”

The Festival Of Power took place at Santa Pod Raceway from Friday 14th to Sunday 16th April. 

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