Trackside Aerodynamics

An insight into the Formula 1 Trackside Aerodynamicist role

About this Course

Testing a car on track is one of the final stages of race car development. Track aerodynamicists are key players in executing aerodynamic tests and collecting aero data to improve car performance.

This course provides a deep insight into track aero tests and the toolset required.

Finally, students will learn and put into practice methods that trackside aerodynamicists use to collect and analyse aero data to improve car performance.

Upon successful course completion, each student will receive an official Motorsport Engineer certificate. All students are free to interact with the instructor, benefit from industry networking opportunities, professional recommendations and advice.

  • Introduction to aerodynamic track testing in Formula 1
  • Objectives of an aero test
  • Instrumentation used in aero experiments
  • Aerodynamic data analysis
  • Case study: analysing different aerodynamic setups of a race car

Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to:

1. Demonstrate an understanding in the topic of aerodynamic track testing and its objectives
2. Demonstrate an ability to identify the most suitable instrumentation for aero data collection
3. Demonstrate knowledge in the use of data analysis software to quantify aerodynamic performance
4. Become familiar with the track side aerodynamicist role, and the common techniques used to analyse track data with the aim to improve overall car performance

  • you possess some degree of knowledge about fluid dynamics theory and principles
  • you are an engineering student who want to start a career the realm of F1 aerodynamics
  • you are a professional looking to learn about current trackside aerodynamic testing trends in F1

Course reviews

See how our students rate this course

A very well organized course!
Marwan Attar
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Covers various important topics that gives a better understanding to what exact duties and tasks are expected from a Trackside Aerodynamicist. Topics covered help better understand Track Testings and analyze graphs and data, the types of Test Runs and the benefits of each, and finally an interesting case study using MoTeC software to analyse Formula 1 data. Thank you Xavier!
Amazing course
Francesco Montanini
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I have learnt about the importance, the objectives and the challenges of an aero track test, the importance of developing correlations between CFD results, wind tunnel and track test data to improve the car performance. I have learnt about the instrumentations used in aero experiments, such as static pressure sensors, suspensions load sensors, Pitot tubes, aero rakes and boundary layer visualization techniques. I have also learnt the common techniques used to analyzed aero track data with the aim to quantify and improve overall car performance. Finally, I really enjoyed the hands-on and challenging case studies, that offered me the chance to design my own test plan for an aero track test for FP1 and get familiar with track data analysis, investigating aerodynamic variables and assessing the aerodynamic performance of an aero setup of a race car. Another small steps towards the goal and looking forward to gaining some other valuable skills into this fantastic field! Thank you Xavier!
Brilliant Course
Umberto Stassi
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This is an amazing course for anyone who wants to pursue a career in motorsports. Each lesson is clearly explained, the prcatical examples also allow to truly understand the amazing concepts that are explained. This course, also, integrates perfectly with the knowledge gained from an Engineering Degree. I think that the hands-on assignments are the best part of the course; thanks to those you can truly master the skills taught in this course. The possibility to receive feedback on your work from a F1 Aerodynamicist is fantastic. The feedbacks from Xavier are detailed and extremely insightful. I definetly recommend this course. Thank you Xavier!
Great course!
Reuben Thomas
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A very good launchpad for those who are seriously considering to take up aerodynamics in motor sports as a career. The assignments were both challenging and interesting. This course provides an insight into a few of the nuances of being a track aero.
Perfect Course for aspiring motorsports/aero/cfd engineers
Raja Rajat Walia
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The course is really amazing. It covers all aspects of the trackside aerodynamics testing. All modules are structured well. The instructor is very kind and helpful. Concepts are explained in detail. Assignments are really practical and interesting to work on. I have never seen a course that involved such a level of theoretical and practical concepts. Really enjoyed each and every bit of the course.
A unique way of learning
Jaume Cruces
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I have enjoyed this course very much. It is a unique way of learning since it is the only course I have found where you learn from an actual trackside aerodynamicist, who knows by first hand all the work involved in this subject. I have especially liked the instrumentation and aero data analysis modules, which were very well explained with practical examples, as well as all the practical assessments where I could apply the knowledge acquired. I would have appreciated a bit more of explanation about how vortices are treated in these cars and ways to assess their impact in the aerodynamics of the car using CFD post processing tools.
Understanding of Aerodynamics
Tejasvi Rastogi
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This course not only help to understand trackside aerodynamics of any motor sport but also help me to understand some advanced concepts that I was unaware of and how to analyze it.
Exciting Aerodynamics course
Gerard Sabaté Arroyo
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Brilliant course which covers all aspects of being a Trackside aero engineer as well as in-deep aerodynamic F1 concepts. It is recommended to have some aero background to follow properly the course. I especially enjoyed the hands-on and challenging assignments and surprised by the fast feedback from Xavier. Not every day you get feedback from an F1 Aerodynamicist! Thank you Xavier!

Engage with our Aerodynamics community!

As a student enrolled to our courses you will have access to our exclusive Community Forums. You will be able to ask questions to your course instructor and start threat discussions in our Forums!

Your Course Instructor

Xavier Ballesta

Xavier currently works as a Senior Aerodynamicist at Williams Racing Team developing aerodynamic components through CFD, wind tunnel and track testing activities.

With a Bachelor in Aeronautical Engineering and a Master’s in Aerospace Engineering from UPC Barcelona Tech, Xavier started his professional career in 2007 with a short stint at Seat Sport developing the aerodynamics of WTCC Seat Leon. He later joined engineering and testing firm IDIADA, where he was involved in car aerodynamics for several automotive projects as a CFD engineer for 4 years.

In summer 2012, Xavier moved to the United Kingdom to pursue his dream of working in Formula 1. He worked at Marussia F1 Team as an aerodynamicist for over 2 years, before joining Williams F1 in 2014, the team he currently works for.

Xavier worked for...
Audi logo BMW Racing logo Mclaren logo

Course curriculum

Xavier tells us about his course FREE PREVIEW
A conversation with Xavier Ballesta (full version)
Message from the instructor
My professional background
Structure of the course
Introduction to F1 official testing
Understanding Aero Parts Catalogue
Download Aero Parts Catalogue Documentation
Integrity
Correlation
Performance Items
Aero setup
Aero track test examples
Download Aero Test Run List Documentation
The challenges
Case Study – Design your own test plan
Assignment: FP1 Run List (Part I)
Design your own test list (Part II)
Static pressure sensors
Suspension load sensors, Pitot tubes and Aero Rakes
Boundary layer visualisation – flow vis / wool tufts
Thermal sensors and Aeroelasticity
Download Instrumentation Documentation
Static Pressure
Flow Visualisation
Rake data and Total Pressure
Aeromaps
Big data & AI
Track testing objectives
Summary of challenges
Summary of tools and data
Aero data analysis applied
Assignment Intro and MoTeC Guide
Final Assignment
Data analysis questionnaire
How to become a Trackside Aerodynamicist
Recommended Bibliography
References

Flexible Course Fees

Choose the plan that's right for you

Basic

2 months access

€39.95

Per month for 2 months

Access Duration: 2 months     ⓘ

Duration for which video lessons, downloadables, quizzes and assignments will be made available from the time of enrolment.

Mode of Delivery: Online     ⓘ

Lessons are managed by experienced course leaders leveraging online means.

E-mail support     ⓘ  

We provide support throughout the duration of the course.

Certification     ⓘ 

A certificate will be awarded upon course completion so you can share your achievement with yout network

Pro

3 months access

€49.95

Per month for 3 months

Access Duration: 3 months     ⓘ   

Duration for which video lessons, downloadables, quizzes and assignments will be made available from the time of enrolment.

Mode of Delivery: Online     ⓘ

Lessons are managed by experienced course leaders leveraging online means.

E-mail support     ⓘ

We provide support throughout the duration of the course.

Certification     ⓘ

A certificate will be awarded upon course completion so you can share your achievement with your network.

Interact with instructor     ⓘ 

Get your questions answered by the course leader thanks to our on-course disucssion area.

Assignment     ⓘ

Impress your course leaders by excelling at the challenges they present to you.

Premium

Lifetime access

€49.95

Per month for 4 months

Access Duration: Lifetime     ⓘ

Duration for which video lessons, downloadables, quizzes and assignments will be made available from the time of enrolment.

Mode of Delivery: Online     ⓘ

Lessons are managed by experienced course leaders leveraging online means.

E-mail support     ⓘ

We provide support throughout the duration of the course.

Certification     ⓘ

A certificate will be awarded upon course completion so you can share your achievement with your network.

Interact with instructor     ⓘ

Get your questions answered by the course leader thanks to our on-course disucssion area.

Assignment     ⓘ

Impress your course leaders by excelling at the challenges they present to you.

Watch lessons in any order     ⓘ

Start from the beginning or the end - you choose!

Assignment feedback     ⓘ

Receive feedback from our course leaders so you can understand areas of improvement.

Videocall with instructor     ⓘ

Network with motorsport engineering professionals and receive the advice you are looking for.

Do not miss out on any news!

Add your email to the mailing list to get the latest updates.

FAQ

Every course page has a section called “This course is for you if…”, detailing who the course is designed for. If you are unsure about a specific course, please get in touch with us at info@motorsportengineer.net and we will be happy to provide further guidance.

Softwares required are included upon course acquisition unless otherwise specified. Where needed, we provide installation instructions.

Every course page has a section describing the syllabus. Furthermore, the detailed curriculum is also publicly available. Courses last between 8 to 20 hours, including guided lectures and individual work. Also, our courses are totally flexible and you can progress at your own pace.

Yes! A personalised certificate with your name and course subject will be provided once you successfully complete the course. This is a great way to show you have learnt from industry experts and allows you to differentiate from other engineers in the sector.

Our courses can be accessed, depending on the price plan acquired, going from 2 months to lifetime access . This guarantees flexibility to the needs of every student. 

If you are a group of students interested in one or more courses please contact us at info@motorsportengineer.net.

We are working hard to offer a series of courses grouped by specialist area (Aerodynamics, Composite Design, Vehicle Dynamics, etc). More details will be shared soon.

Networking is key for finding your way into any industry, and motorsport is not different. For this reason, we think that having the possibility to interact directly with instructors is vital. We have created a number of tools that will allow you to speak directly with our instructors during of the course through the platform.

Keep in mind that interesting questions will make you stand out!

Job hunting can be a stressful process filled with uncertainty. We offer a CV review process that is based on years of experience working in Formula 1 and other motorsport categories and recruiting the best talent for some of the greatest brands in the industry.

This is a private service offered on a case-by-case basis. If you are interested in this, please send us an email to info@motorsportengineer.net mentioning our CV review service and we will get back to you with all the information.

This is one of the most common questions we receive at our inbox.

There is not an answer that fits every single case, but here are some tips you can follow to achieve your goal.

1. Complete the Introductory Course available for free in our platform. It will give you a general idea of the motorsport industry.
2. Read our blog article 5 things every aspiring Formula 1 engineer should know.
3. Browse our Motorsport Academy for a course that catches your attention on the topic that you want to specialise in.
4. Feel free to contact us at info@motorsportengineer.net should you require further assistance.