The Federation Internationale de Automobile (FIA) sanctions the Formula One World Championships each year, which is acclaimed as one of the premier forms of racing around the world. The regulations state that the cars must be constructed by the individual racing teams with a minimum weight of 728 kg including the driver and excluding the fuel. The engine is located between the driver and the back axle and is part of the structural framework. The aerodynamic design is paramount to success in the sport, and millions of dollars are spent on research and development.
The key player in the race is the driver, but behind the scenes is a very important team of mechanics who are continually building and repairing the cars to make them the fastest on the circuit. To be an F1 racing mechanic, you need to be highly trained in service and maintenance skills and have undergone five years of courses and training, gaining your Environmental Protection Agency and National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence certificate. They will use specific equipment to check dirt levels and emissions to make sure all cars and drivers are safe and one item is a Dust Monitor which could be found at http://www.mattsmonitors.co.uk/. Some F1 teams offer apprenticeships, enabling you to get into the exotic world of Formula One racing.
The wages are generally the same as any mechanic with the same qualifications, but because you have to travel abroad and will be away from home in excess of 180 days a year, there are perks to cover international travel. For many, the thrill of working on exotic cars makes it all worthwhile. The starting salary for a mechanic is $21,470 to $38,470, which rises to $64,070 in the top ten teams.
The day-to-day life of an F1 mechanic is not as fabulous as it may seem, being away from home and not seeing your family for months on end combined with the horrendous number of hours worked each day can be gruelling and exhausting. As an individual, you have to love what you do, be part of a large team of highly skilled people and realise that travel is going to be a big part of your life, from the Silverstone F1 club to the Hungary Paddock club.
The long-term prospects for F1 mechanics are looking good because the Grand Prix is still very popular. Teams make a lot of their money through sponsorship and advertising, and their elite expertise should keep them in business for a long time.