Four Royal Oak Intermediate pupils came within one second of winning a trip to Wellington on the 22nd of November. The students were taking part in the annual Blue Light PCT (Physical Competency Test) Challenge at the ASB Showgrounds. The challenge involved tackling the same obstacle course that police officers have to complete before they can join the force and then every two years during their service.
The Blue Light charity runs events all over the country for Year 7 pupils to try their hand at the PCT. The only difference is that while the police have to do the test solo, the pupils do it in teams of four.
Twenty-one schools from the Auckland Central and Counties Manukau Police Districts took part in the challenge, with the fastest team from each region winning a trip to the Police College next year, to compete in the National Championships.
The test starts with pushing a trailer 10 metres, then taking a spare tyre out of the trailer and carrying it back the same 10 metres. Next was 200m run, then walking a balance beam, climbing over a hurdle, running a zig-zag course, under two low hurdles, climbing through a window, over a 1.8 metre wall, carrying a 75kg weight for 10 metres and finally over a 2.2 metre fence.
Royal Oak put in a great effort, finishing in 2.56, less than one second behind Waiheke High School who took out the Auckland Central group. Most of the students needed help to get over the 1.8 metre wall, however the Royal Oak team claimed afterwards that the 200 metre run was the worst part of the challenge.