Much have been written about ways to go further on a tank of fuel, ranging from planning your trips to getting rid of excess weight (including your extra ‘bulges’).
Shell decided to educate young people and members of the media on efficiency by pitting them against each other in a race around Bonifacio Global City’s (BGC) High Street on February 19. Akin to The Amazing Race, teams of five had to complete tasks that tested not only their physical and mental capabilities, but also their teamwork in performing the tasks efficiently. The team that finished the earliest wins.
“We at Shell understand every motorist’s need to maximize their day, so we continue to instill the merits of being fuel efficient to everyone,” said Pilipinas Shell Vice President for Retail Anthony Yam. “That’s why we believe in educating the youth on the importance of knowing the correct fuel saving tips and the use of the right fuel such as Shell FuelSave with Active Efficiency Ingredients, which is designed to last longer than standard fuels. We want to start them young, and these are useful tools that can help drivers become more fuel efficient and do more in their everyday lives.”
Scavenger hunt, quiz bee
The day started with a briefing at the BGC Amphitheater, where the teams were told that they had five minutes to complete a task at each of the seven stations scattered around BGC High Street. Teams that couldn’t finish the task would be allowed to move to the next station, but would be meted a two-minute penalty.
Most of the teams were comprised of student-engineers that will represent the Philippines in this year’s Shell Eco-Marathon Asia in Manila on March 3 to 6, while some teams were made up of media people. They lined up under the start-finish arch according to their shirt color, shooting out to the first station on the go signal, excited screams trailing the bright colors whizzing by.
The teams had to go on a scavenger hunt to collect fuel-efficiency tip cards scattered around the search area. Some teams were able to complete the task quickly, running past curious and bemused pedestrians to the next stations some two blocks away.
There, teams had to test their flexibility by contorting themselves through a rope web without ringing the bells (which was surprisingly not a challenge for the ‘more mature’ media teams). They also had their brains picked in a hopscotch-style quiz bee on fuel-efficiency myths and facts, among other tasks.
After all these, the teams ran back to the amphitheater for the final challenges, which included driving a remote-controlled car around a small oval track without letting the hard-boiled egg on top fall off and unlocking a large chest that contained pieces to a giant jigsaw puzzle that they had to assemble. Triumphant teams would be given a flag that they had to place into stands, which also stopped their time.
Video games, ‘improv’ survey results
Afterwards, we were all whisked away to dinner a few blocks away. The kids were treated to video games and party games while waiting for the program to start. All the participants were also made to sign pledges on plastic balls on how they could be more efficient when traveling.
The event is part of Shell’s Do More campaign, which reinforces the value of fuel efficiency to motorists. In fact, the company conducted a poll in January this year of 1,000 Filipino drivers, who felt that they had less time to do the things they enjoy this year compared to last year, such as spending time with their families and friends, because of traffic congestion.
Short of lobbying the government to limit the sale of cars, beef up driver education or perhaps improve our roads, the members of Silly People’s Improv Theater Manila showed us hilarious, on-the-spot situations of how this problem could lead to break-ups, upset children and even resorting to talking to imaginary friends. In addition, nearly two in three respondents said changing the way they drive could give them more time to do more fun things, while half would even be willing to take a long road trip if they could drive further on the same amount of fuel.
The evening concluded with awarding the top three finishers. Third was the yellow team from De La Salle University, second was the white team comprised of members of the media, while the blue team, comprised of engineering students from various schools, got the top spot.