EXCLUSIVE: Marc Priestley Explains What F1 Teams Look for in Pit Crew Applicants

EXLCUSIVE: Marc Priestley Explains What F1 Teams Look for in Pit Crew Applicants

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Getting into F1 is a dream for many, and being a part of the pit crew who change tires in less than two seconds is a very appealing thought for a huge proportion of the fanbase. To become a member of the pit crew, however, there is something extra an applicant has to demonstrate. Marc Priestley, a former McLaren mechanic, revealed the secret behind this extra quality in an exclusive interview with The SportsRush‘s Tanish Chachra.


When asked about how different it is to get into F1 today, compared to when Priestley did back in the 2000s, he stated that there aren’t as many opportunities today as there were back in the day. The main thing teams look out for is that ‘something extra’.

Priestley goes on to say that F1 isn’t about the glitz and glamour. What teams look out for, is whether one can genuinely give their 100%, irrespective of what they are asked to do.


“Really what a team is looking for, is something extra. It’s the determination, it’s the passion. It’s the willingness to go the extra mile,” said Priestley in his conversation with The SportsRush.

“If you turn up to Formula 1, expecting it to simply be glamorous and glitzy, and being flown around the world, staying in lovely hotels. And having a lovely time seeing the planet. That’s not what it is.”, he added.

Priestley went on to say that it’s important to give everything when working in F1. According to him, no matter what the role is, everyone in F1 goes above and beyond. There were times when he had to stay up all night before a race, working on the car. These are the kind of things, that aren’t a part of the job description.

Marc Priestley explains why it is difficult to get into F1 nowadays

Back in the day, there were test teams in F1. Mechanics and pit crew members would travel all over the world with these teams, who didn’t even take part in Grand Prix weekends. They ran their cars and tested components. In the process, the pit crew and mechanics would get a chance to train too.


Now, test teams don’t exist in F1, and the competition to get into the existing 10 teams is much higher. This makes it difficult for aspirants to get into the sport. Priestley makes an interesting analogy, comparing the similar journey of a pit crew member and an F1 driver.

Just like an F1 driver makes their way up the ladder by driving in smaller categories, he advises F1 pit crew aspirants to start small in the world of motorsport. Eventually, they get the attention of bigger teams in bigger ventures, until they make it to the pinnacle of motorsport.

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