Cut To The Race Podcast

Want to work in F1? Formula Student is now the training ground…

An insight into how one Formula Student team is pushing for victory, and F1 careers...

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It is a dream of many to work in Formula One. Sadly opportunities can be few and far between and getting the correct experience to even break into Formula One can be difficult. However, Formula Student is providing a training ground for many students hoping to work in the “bizz”. One team, in particular, UGRacing, shows us how they prepare their cars (and themselves) for competition.

Formula Student Teams at Competition: Image Credit: IMechE

With Formula One growing in popularity (somewhat exponentially), many more youngsters are setting their sights on working in Formula One. Some will want to be in the driver’s seat (of course), but now many are seeing other job roles within Formula One as much more attractive careers.

Formula Student, founded in 1998, challenges University teams around the world to design and build their very own single-seater ‘formula style’ car. Since its inception, Formula Student has challenged young engineers and has tested them (sometimes to their limits).

The skills gained from the creation of a car are readily transferable to other motorsport series – even Formula One.

What is involved?

Since 1998, times have changed. In the current era of Formula Student, teams have the option to develop an Electric car and a Driverless car in addition to an Internal Combustion car. Today, teams are also challenged with a “concept car” which isn’t necessarily a car to be built but the judges test the concept’s designs rigorously.

Times haven’t only changed with the cars. Now we’re in the age of social media, many teams use it to their advantage. Some University teams have sub-teams with Media and Marketing which work on putting their name out there. Teams also can have partnership sub-units that work on securing funding, sponsorships, and partnerships.

With all this experience that a Formula Student provides, it’s no wonder that many are seeing it as a stepping stone to the illustrious Formula One world. The incredible F1 legend, Ross Brawn, is a Formula Student patron:

There are two really innovative forms of motorsport left: Formula One and Formula Student”

-Ross Brawn

With special insight into one of the teams, UGRacing, we take a look into what it takes to succeed in Formula Student.

UGRacing (UGR), the Formula Student team at the University of Glasgow, is currently the best in Scotland, and going into this year’s Silverstone competition, they hope to retain their crown.

University of Glasgow Racing

For the 2022 completion, UGR is taking an Internal Combustion Car, a Driverless Car and they are designing a concept car. As the reigning Scottish Champions, the team is looking to equal and improve the results from the 2021 competition.

For those of you who do not know, the Internal Combustion cars are tested on a multitude of criteria in both Static and Dynamic events. Dynamic events include an endurance race, a sprint race, an acceleration test, and a figure of 8 assessment. These events are scored out of points. The judges also assess the design of the cars, the cost and manufacturing of the cars, the team’s business presentation, and of course, whether they pass a safety test.

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UGRacing is currently working towards the 2022 competition, and like any motor racing team, it’s a hard push to the finish line. Preparing cars and business presentations for an annual competition seem like a full-time job; yet the team members are all students who have exams and university work on top of the racing team. That doesn’t mean the team isn’t “All-Work and No-Play”.  The team has regular socials, to really give you the university experience, and they make some entertaining social media posts. Check out what they did for April Fools:

The team has a garage on campus where they conduct most of the manufacturing of the cars. Again, like any motor racing team, UGRacing are very passionate about testing the car whenever they can. They test at a Scottish Track called Kames, and they have tested in front of the gorgeous University of Glasgow building.

Learn more about Formula Student

If you want to learn more about the team, you can head to any one of their social media channels. Here, they have an exclusive docu-series “Inside UGRacing: The Road to Silverstone”. The series details the different sub-teams and how they’re getting ready for competition.

You might be thinking, how does Formula Student translate to F1? Well, look at UGRacing as an example. The team has prepared many students to go onto roles at the Mercedes F1 team and the Williams F1 team.

Formula Student doesn’t just prepare you for F1 either, many graduates go onto roles at other incredible companies in the automotive industry. Just recently, UGRacing hosted an Alumni panel with Alumni currently working at Tesla and Rolls-Royce.

So, if you’re currently a University student or looking at going to university, Formula Student can provide a great way to bridge the gap between the skills you already have and the ones needed for the industry. If you want to learn more, head over to the Formula Student website or the UGRacing social media, which will give you a different point of view.

Feature Image: UGRacing

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