Next race: March 29, 2015

MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX

Sepang International Circuit, MY

26˚ 78˚ CURRENT
15:00 LOCAL TIME
Caso Ediface Logo

FIRST F1 GRAND PRIX: 1999
NUMBER OF LAPS: 56
CIRCUIT LENGTH: 5.543km
RACE DISTANCE: 310.408km

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Rob Marshall

Chief Engineering Officer

United Kingdom
Nationality
English
Hometown
Taunton, UK
Date of birth
14/Apr/1968

    DRAWING THE RACING LINE


    From a teenage project rebuilding a vintage motorcycle to concept design at Rolls Royce and on to dreaming up championship-winning Formula One machinery, our Chief Engineering Officer, Rob Marshall, has been taking on major design projects all his life. Born in Taunton, Somerset in the UK in 1968, Rob developed a passion for machinery early in life, prompted in large part by his father's work and interests.

    "My father was also an engineer and worked for a company…

    DRAWING THE RACING LINE


    From a teenage project rebuilding a vintage motorcycle to concept design at Rolls Royce and on to dreaming up championship-winning Formula One machinery, our Chief Engineering Officer, Rob Marshall, has been taking on major design projects all his life. Born in Taunton, Somerset in the UK in 1968, Rob developed a passion for machinery early in life, prompted in large part by his father's work and interests.

    "My father was also an engineer and worked for a company that made paper-making machines," says Rob. "He had a lathe, so we were always building bits and pieces. For example, on my 16th birthday I got given a 1930 AJS motorcycle in the form of two tea chests full of parts and I had to figure all that out. There was a lot of engineering going on in our house. My dad hated gardening but loved steam engines, so he built a steam lawn mower."

    Rob's boyhood fascination took him to Cardiff University, where he naturally studied mechanical engineering and then eventually to a career in aerospace, working for Rolls Royce. "I worked in the advance project design department in Bristol on military concepts, engines and that sort of thing. It was a great job, genuinely interesting," he explains.

    By the late 1990s Marshall was ready to move on however, and looking to move into motor sport began canvassing teams. "I kind of always fancied moving into motorsport but I'd never had any luck when I wrote letters off and I never got offered any jobs," he admits. That changed in 1998 when he wrote to every Formula One team and finally landed a job at Benetton.

    After its Michael Schumacher-inspired mid-'90s heyday the team was going through a period of transition, however, and Marshall's early years in Formula One were not easy. "The 1998 car was, frankly, a bit rubbish and we had a succession of not-so-great cars until Benetton became Renault, which it did in name in 2002. We struggled with the engine initially, but eventually it got better."

    After Fernando Alonso scored his first win in the team's RS23 at the 2003 Hungarian Grand Prix, the 2004 car scored another win, in the hands of Jarno Trulli at Monaco Grand Prix. The curve was clearly upwards and the following year, Rob and his team delivered on that potential, with the R25 taking Alonso to his first title win. Despite the success, Rob, by then head of mechanical design at the team, moved on to Red Bull Racing, where he took on the role of chief designer.

    "I never saw it as a step back, moving from a team that won championships to a new team," he explains. "It was simply a different challenge, and a much more daunting one. Fortunately, it was made easier by the fact that were some very good people working here."

    The result has been an even greater wave of success that has seen Rob and the team win multiple championships. However, despite reaping success across both the Drivers' and Constructors' Championships, there is no sign of Marshall getting jaded, especially with the arrival, last year of another major set of regulation changes that have once again reset the bar in terms of engineering challenges.

    "There is always another problem to worry about," he says. "There's never a part of the car you're completely happy with. Even if you've just finished one bit and you think it's brilliant, give it a day or two and you find yourself thinking 'I wish I'd done this or that'. Or you see someone else's solution and they've done a better job and you feel a bit sore and want to go away and do an even better job.

    "Formula One is a constantly moving target," he concludes. "Nothing is ever good enough. Even if you are winning the championship by a country mile your car is still not good enough. There is no ceiling to what you can do. There is always a way of making the car better."

    Read full bio

    Career Highlights

    2014 The RB10, utilising F1’s new 1.6 litre turbocharged, hybrid engines, takes three wins and 12 podium finishes in total on its way to claiming second position in the Constructors’ Championship standings. Rob takes on an expanded brief as Chief Engineering Officer

    2013 Sees the Infiniti Red Bull Racing RB9 race to victory 13 times to claim a fourth Championship double in succession.

    2010-2012 Heavily involved in the 'triple-double' of World Championship winning Red Bull cars

    2009 Instrumental in designing Red Bull Racing's first winning grand prix car: the RB5

    2008 Part of the Red Bull Technologies team that designers Sebastian Vettel's Italian Grand Prix winning Toro Rosso STR7

    Career Highlights

    2014 The RB10, utilising F1’s new 1.6 litre turbocharged, hybrid engines, takes three wins and 12 podium finishes in total on its way to claiming second position in the Constructors’ Championship standings. Rob takes on an expanded brief as Chief Engineering Officer

    2013 Sees the Infiniti Red Bull Racing RB9 race to victory 13 times to claim a fourth Championship double in succession.

    2010-2012 Heavily involved in the 'triple-double' of World Championship winning Red Bull cars

    2009 Instrumental in designing Red Bull Racing's first winning grand prix car: the RB5

    2008 Part of the Red Bull Technologies team that designers Sebastian Vettel's Italian Grand Prix winning Toro Rosso STR7

    2006 Joins Red Bull Racing as Chief Designer

    2005 Instrumental in designing double-championship winning Renault R25 as driven by Fernando Alonso 2004 Promoted to Head of Mechanical Design at Renault F1

    1998 Joins Benetton as a design engineer, working in mechanical design

    1989 Rolls-Royce Aero Engines Design engineer

    1986-1989 Cardiff University First in Mechanical engineering

    Full list
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