Williams and Autosport are pleased to reveal the names of the five finalists for the 2018 Autosport Williams Engineer of the Future Award.
After numerous candidates were put forward by some of the UK’s leading universities, five students have been successful in reaching the final stage of the award which involves a two-day assessment centre.
The annual award, which was introduced in 2015, names an engineering student from a UK university as a rising star of Formula One engineering and supports them with an accelerated career development programme at Williams.
Following a targeted application process that saw eight of the UK’s leading universities nominate their star engineering students for consideration, the below five students impressed in the first application round before taking part in an assessment workshop at Williams HQ in Grove on 10-11 October 2018;
- Ana Groom, University of Cambridge
- Carlos Hermosin Acasuso, Brunel University London
- Luke Dardis, University of Bath
- Owen Heaney, Imperial College London
- Valerio Pellicciari, University of Bath
The assessment workshop saw the five finalists complete a number of tasks designed to test their engineering know-how, team work, problem solving skills and personality fit. The students have been assessed by a panel of judges comprising leading industry, academic, media and Formula One personnel;
- Paddy Lowe, Williams Chief Technical Officer
- Nicola Salter, Williams Human Resources Director
- Sir Patrick Head, Williams co-founder and former Technical Director
- Edd Straw, Autosport Grand Prix Editor
The winner of the Autosport Williams Engineer of the Future Award will be formally announced at the annual Autosport Awards on 2 December 2018. As part of their prize, they will be offered an initial two-year placement in an accelerated development programme that will see them mentored by senior engineers and rotate through various areas of Williams before finding their specialism. During the placement, they will also get the unique opportunity to work in the team’s race operations division and gain experience at a Grand Prix.
Speaking about the selection process Paddy Lowe, Chief Technical Officer at Williams, said; “I’m very pleased to see that this award, now in its third year, is still growing and attracting a high number of quality applications. It’s encouraging to see the engineering talent coming up through the ranks and I look forward to seeing which of the selected five excels at our assessment centre. Past winners have continued to thoroughly impress us at Williams and I expect this year’s victor to be no exception.”
Edd Straw, Autosport Grand Prix Editor, added; “Grand Prix Racing is an endeavour built on the efforts of hundreds of individuals, all contributing in their areas of speciality to the end product everyone sees on television - the car with a driver behind the wheel. Williams F1 has an illustrious history of success built on the staff who make up the team, and the Autosport Williams Engineer of the Future Award will unearth another individual with the outstanding qualities required to uphold its tradition for excellence. The award has always attracted high quality finalists, and this year is no exception. Motor-racing has always been about engineering as much as driving, something Autosport and Williams combined to run this award to recognise.”