Real-time data is changing how Aston Martin Red Bull Racing approaches motorsport innovation

This article is brought to you by Citrix.
  • Aston Martin Red Bull Racing has been working in conjunction with Citrix to identify and problem solve on-the-track issues in real time.
  • In-car sensors collect up to 400 gigabytes of data each race weekend.
  • Track-side engineers are able to use a virtual workspace to deliver heavy computer-aided design applications and workloads.

Formula One racing is one of Australia’s most beloved spectator sports, so it’s second-nature for fans to know the names of their favourite drivers.

Yet despite being part of a team often comprising upwards of 25 people, innovation in the pit lane doesn’t tend to score the same immediate recognition.

The technology required to monitor everything from tire pressure to engine temperature is all implemented from the pit, with crew members in constant communication with drivers to maximise the output of the car in a safe and effective manner.

In short: this tech-driven communication process ensures that the car not only performs well on track, but data from the race can be used to improve future cars back at the factory. As the technology behind this process is what aids drivers as they climb the leaderboard, technological developments designed to improve this process are vital.

To innovate in this area, Aston Martin Red Bull Racing has been working in partnership with global software company Citrix to identify and problem solve on-the-track issues in real time, by transferring data immediately to engineers.

“The mutual innovation and value of the partnership helps Aston Martin Red Bull Racing put winning vehicles and teams on the track and helps Citrix power a better way to work for all our customers,” said Tim Minahan, Executive Vice President of Business Strategy and Chief Marketing Officer at Citrix.

Image: Charles Coates/Getty Images ℅ Aston Martin Red Bull Racing

Citrix’s technology facilitates a real-time feedback loop mid-race that has been instrumental in placing at recent motorsports events – namely, with Max Verstappen (driving the RB14 TAG Heuer) coming in third place at the recent Australian Grand Prix in March.

More crucially however, it not only enables quick-fire responses in the case of incidents or malfunctions, but also renders the wider Aston Martin Red Bull Racing team (based in the UK) able to implement changes to bolster performance in future races at the same time.

“This access to information can be especially important during practice sessions, where a car configuration might not have been driven before on a specific track – data collected during the lap is used right away to make decisions and improvements to the car to better suit the track conditions,” said Aston Martin Red Bull Racing’s Head of Technical Partnerships Zoe Chilton.

“Each car is fitted with over 100 sensors and 7,500+ unique components, which then compete in over 21 races across five continents. These sensors can collect up to 400 GB of data each race weekend; which is a lot to sift through.”

The visualisation of this data can have a tangible impact on reducing pit-stop times, better managing the car’s functionality mid-race, and ensuring post-race amendments target problem areas.

“At the track, we usually have 60 team members working to make sure the race goes smoothly and the car is performing at its best,” Chilton said.

“We have a team of engineers who are always moving and need to get the right information at exactly the right time to make their race-critical decisions, so being able to collaborate and work together seamlessly is essential.”

The innovative partnership comes as a result of Aston Martin Red Bull Racing’s dedication to progress and technological advancement in the racing industry.

“It’s not about the brand, or which companies want to have their logo on the cars, it’s about the best technology, that adds to our business,” Chilton said.

“With Citrix, we share an innovation mindset and attitude about pushing boundaries and seeing what’s possible.”

Meanwhile, for Citrix it’s an opportunity to band together with one of the foremost motorsport companies to see their technology climb the leaderboards.

“Within Citrix, we have teams of developers and project managers who are always looking for new ways to improve our software and give businesses like Aston Martin Red Bull Racing new ways of working,” Minahan said.

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