James Allison Mercedes F1 Technical Director.

James Allison Returns to Mercedes, Fuels F1’s Technical Drive


James Allison has returned to his role as Technical Director of Mercedes F1 in 2023. The British engineer oversees the design of the upcoming W15, and acknowledges that he is working more than in the previous months, despite enjoying it immensely, more so than what he used to do in his free time.

“I love tinkering. I could endlessly amuse myself doing things in my garage, at airfields, and generally having fun,” Allison stated in the Performance People podcast. “However, this is nothing like the work, and the role I play in the team doesn’t leave much room for that kind of self-indulgence.”

“But this job is incredibly rewarding, challenging, indeed, and incredibly emotionally fulfilling. So, even though I might be spending more time at work than I would like, that time is nevertheless extremely enjoyable and exciting.”

Allison yearned to return to the intensity of Formula 1: “And if things are moving in a better direction, it’s incredibly gratifying and gives you a sense of usefulness and energy.”

“So, what convinced me to get back into it? I spent about a year and a half in semi-retirement, working three days a week, which allowed me a lot of time for tinkering and playing, and it was great, but the downside was that I was away from the hustle and the fight.”

James Allison Mercedes F1: Thriving in Formula 1’s Intensity

And the engineer acknowledges that it’s this hustle and fight he enjoys in having a more intense role: “I know it’s a bit of a cliché, but it’s kind of how I feel in Formula 1.”

“I love the fight, the struggle, and being alongside my teammates in the heat of the action. And being still in the business, but slightly removed from what was happening, especially during a period where it was clear that the team was struggling, didn’t particularly please me.”

“Therefore, when I was asked to consider the possibility of returning and taking up the mantle again, even though I was a bit sad that it meant somewhat reducing my free time, it was with a joyful heart from the perspective of working with my teammates and the pleasure of fighting together, trying to push things forward together once again.”

James Allison Mercedes F1 James Allison Mercedes F1

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