Formula One mechanics work behind the scenes to fix the vehicles the race-car drivers use to succeed at the track. The task is not easy: The job consists of long hours; you must also be willing to work Saturdays and Sundays; you must also be an individual who pays attention to detail. On race day, one minor glitch can lose a Grand Prix. You must take the time to test every aspect of the car, to make sure it works.
- Skill level:
Become an amateur mechanic. Start by repairing your own car, and those belonging to friends and family. If they are pleased with your work, then their satisfaction will confirm your knack for repairing automobiles.
Seek employment in your local car shop. To work for Formula One you must have experience, and working in an auto shop can provide you the opportunity to obtain that kind of experience.
Take college-level courses in engineering. Although, as veteran sports writer Will Gray says, a specific curriculum is not a requirement, a degree in mechanical engineering, automotive engineering or aerodynamics is helpful.
Seek a job with another racing-car company. This will help you gain experience that Formula One will respect. In addition, it will give you practice in the areas that Formula One values most -- being able to problem-solve as part of a team, and the ability to think and work quickly.
Apply to Formula One. The application process is your chance to sell yourself as an experienced mechanic who has successfully repaired racing cars and is able to meet the strenuous demands of the job. If you have helped drivers win races, include that on your resume as well.
Tips and warnings
- Research top racing teams to see what they are looking for while you are still in college. Moreover, as Grey points out, it's a good idea to research what universities teams are suggesting are the best automotive engineering schools, whether in England, the United States or any other nation in which you intend to study.
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