3 teams, 48 engines, 3.5 tonnes of freight, 30 people, 1,000 flights, 19 races, 5 continents…we talk the numbers of the 2011 season with Jean-Pierre Raymond.
With Renault Sport F1 supplying a third team for the first time in 2011, the demands on the logistics team are even higher. There are more people and more equipment to send and even more pressure to get it right. The numbers do add up and, as logistics and security manager, it’s Jean-Pierre Raymond’s job to make sure that the teams at the track have everything they need to get the best results possible.
"According to the FIA regulations, each team we supply can use eight engines per season. These are designed and tested at RSF1 HQ in Viry-Châtillon. Before each race, two engines are sent to each of RSF1’s partner teams to be fitted to their chassis, so when the car arrives at the track before each race it is more or less complete and only needs set-up tuning."
"In addition we will normally send a further five to six engines to each race from Viry. For the first race of the season in Australia though, we sent nine engines in total, three for each team, in addition to the engines already in the chassis since the freight travels from Melbourne straight to Malaysia and then onto China. With each engine weighing approx 130kg each that was over a tonne in weight just for the engines."
A huge amount of organisation
Sending engines over the world requires a huge amount of organisation and Jean-Pierre has refined a system that allows safe – and more importantly quick – dispatch of material to races.
"The engines are always finished quite late before the races as the more time available, the more opportunity to refine settings. We therefore send the extra engines with couriers on freight planes. Normally you would need special permission to send engines like this since they are classed as dangerous materials. We however have a specific cahier de charges we have established between ourselves and the freight company that means they recognise the engines are technical parts and not in any way unstable. We also drain the engines of any fuel to guarantee safety. To get the freight companies to agree to do this, we needed to explain exactly what was being transported and why it wasn’t a risk. "
"Additionally we send material with the European-based teams on a specially chartered plane that leaves from Munich (a central point between the Ferrari, Sauber and Toro Rosso teams) and goes direct to the Grands Prix. We send consumable equipment, such as cleaners, office material and tools on this plane. Really only one third of the freight we send to races goes in this way, with the remaining freight going on the standard freight planes. In total we would send 3.6 tonnes of equipment to just one race.’"
The numbers do add up: 3.6 tonnes to 19 races, that’s almost 70 tonnes – not far off the weight of a commercial jet plane!
It’s crucial that this material arrives on time and that within the freight there is enough equipment for the engine teams to do their jobs at the circuit. The results so far this year show that Jean-Pierre and his team have got it right so far…
**RSF1 sends 30 people to each race.
Each team is serviced by 6 people, with 2 engineers per team, 2 technicians, 1 support engine engineer and 1 electrician, plus three security people – one per team –marketing, logistics and management. That’s over a thousand individual tickets for one season, not including testing!