A formula racing car built by university students has run its final lap and found a home at the National Motor Museum in Beaulieu.

The single-seat racer, engineered by University of Southampton undergraduates, has been retired after several seasons challenging for top spot in the Formula Student competition.

The spirited petrol-powered vehicle was nicknamed Stag 6B by the young team and becomes the only formula racing car of its kind in Beaulieu’s famous collection.

Final-year student Keira Byrne, who leads the team, said: “It’s wonderful to see something we built from scratch being displayed at the museum alongside some of the world’s most famous vehicles.

“Our car looks a little different from everything else at Beaulieu so it really stands out.

“We hope it shows children who love motorsport like we do that getting into the sport is attainable and you don’t need much background or experience to start.”

Keira has landed her first job at Aston Martin's F1 outfit and will start after graduating next summer.

Fellow students Max O'Brien, who himself is joining Red Bull’s F1 team, and teammate Ash Johnson said: “It’s a mixed bag of feelings to see the Stag 6B retire after so many years of hard work and success on the track, but it’s great that we are part of Beaulieu’s history.

“There are a few zip ties and welding marks here and there on the car, but it shows the real effort of our team to get our hands dirty to be successful.”

The Stag's 600cc engine, taken from a motorbike, was purposely limited to around 75 brake horsepower for the Formula Student competition.

It now sits in the National Motor Museum’s collection centre and joins its wider exhibition including the original Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and cars from BBC’s Top Gear.

Beaulieu Deputy CEO and Director of Collections Andrea Bishop said the Stag 6B racer is unique in the museum.

She said: “The car is unlike anything we have here – and it will proudly be displayed in our collections centre to demonstrate our commitment to the next generation of motor enthusiasts."

The Formula Student competition sees UK universities build and race their own cars at the biggest tracks across Europe, including Silverstone.

It is a tournament which the University of Southampton has been contesting for the last decade – but only the Stag 6B car has come close to winning it, finishing second in its class in 2021.