Explore: Engineering

Lola Cars

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Steve H

00.00.03 My name is Steven Halsall. My job title is Aerodynamicist and I work for Lola Cars in Huntingdon. An aerodynamicist means analysing the flow of air over the car and the two primary roles in my job are to reduce the drag of the car and to increase the down force of the car and both those things help the car go faster which is the end goal.

00.00.32 I was probably influenced quite a bit by my dad and his brothers and my granddad, everyone in my family was into cars really. So I was just always around cars from a pretty young age and my dad owns and runs a garage. So quite often instead of playing in the park I’d be mucking around in the garage taking bits of cars apart. I was always taking bicycles apart and making go-karts and things like that. Anything mechanical I was quite fascinated by.

00.01.05 Being a race car designer is a kid’s dream job really. It was for me and thankfully I managed to, after quite a lot of hard work, get there and managed to do it. I think I do have a pretty sort of logical and straight thinking brain and I always just thought what do I need to do to get the job that I want and just did whatever I had to do really.

00.01.30 For me, university was a great experience. It was really good fun. Quite a challenge at times. I studied aeromechanical engineering at Strathclyde University in Glasgow. Again, I always sort of knew throughout university I had this end goal of wanting to become a racing car designer. So I was coming towards the end of my degree and I didn’t have any job prospects lined up.

00.02.03 So I was thinking what am I going to do with a few months to go before the end of my degree I didn’t have a job offer lined up. So I wrote off to loads of different companies all with just with this letter saying, ‘Have you got any jobs, or is there anything that I could do?’ And Lola offered me a two week summer placement and it went really well. I enjoyed working here and I think they saw something in me which was quite good.

00.02.28 And later on that year, they actually offered me a job. So I think that was one of the big things that I learnt and that I would pass on a piece of advice I would say to somebody else is you’ve got to be proactive in finding your job, finding your career. I didn’t have any prospects but I just got on and wrote to loads of places and one company took me on and from there, I’ve got a fantastic job.

00.02.58 Outside of work my biggest passion is cycling, mountain bike racing particularly. I’ve travelled all over Britain racing my mountain bike and I love it, it’s fantastic. It’s a really good sport. It keeps me pretty fit and it’s good fun as well. It’s a good buzz flying along on a good track through the forest is pretty good fun.

00.03.28 I think I’d probably go for the one I have at the moment actually. It’s pretty good. I can’t really think of honestly of many other jobs that I would do. I guess I’d love to be a professional sportsman but unfortunately I don’t have the talent to do that so as a paid job, the one I’ve got at the moment is pretty good.

00.03.48 End

Steven Halsall is an Aerodynamicist for Lola Cars. “Being a race car designer is a kid’s dream job really. I was just always around cars from pretty young age and my dad owns and runs a garage… I wrote off to loads of different companies all with just with this letter saying, ‘Have you got any jobs, or is there anything that I could do?'”.

More information about Vehicle technicians, mechanics and electricians

average salary

The UK average salary is £29,813

average weekly hours

There are 37.5 hours in the average working week

99%  male 
1%  female 

The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male

Future employment

Future employment?

? Vehicle technicians, mechanics and electricians accept calls for help and repair and service the mechanical parts and electrical/electronic circuitry and components of cars, lorries, buses, motorcycles and other motor vehicles, and repair and service auto air-conditioning systems.
There are no formal academic entry requirements, although some employers may require GCSEs/S grades or an equivalent qualification. Training is undertaken off- and on-the-job. NVQs/SVQs at Levels 2 and 3 are available. Apprenticeships at NVQ/SVQ Levels 2 and 3 are available and take three to four years to complete.
  • Visually checks, test drives or uses test equipment to diagnose engine and mechanical faults;
  • Removes, dismantles, repairs and replaces defective parts and prepares new parts using appropriate tools;
  • Reassembles, tests, adjusts and tunes the appropriate parts, systems or entire engine;
  • Carries out routine maintenance checks on oil and air filters, brakes and other vehicle parts/systems;
  • Diagnoses faults in electrical/electronic circuitry, removes faulty components and fits replacements;
  • Checks condition of electrical/electronic systems and carries out servicing tasks;
  • Installs additional electrical amenities such as radio/CD players, aerials;
  • Repairs and services air conditioning, heating and engine-cooling systems.
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