• Geoffrey Willis

Director of Commercial Engineering at the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team

Geoffrey Willis is Director of Commercial Engineering of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team, a role which he describes as “looking after the digital tools that underpin our technology”.

Having studied engineering at the University of Cambridge, Geoff followed this with several years of aerodynamic research at engineering consultancy BMT, whilst completing a PhD in aerodynamics at the University of Exeter.

In 1987, he made his first step into the world of competition engineering by joining the design group of Peter de Savary's Blue Arrow America's Cup Challenge. Here, he spent the next three years working on keel and hull design, in addition to testing and developing computational fluid dynamics (CFD) tools.

Geoff made his motorsport debut in 1990, joining the Leyton House team as a consultant and becoming one of the first to introduce CFD tools into the aerodynamic design process. The Williams F1 Team would beckon next and was where Geoff’s reputation grew within the aerodynamics arena, as the team tasted Constructors’ Championship success in 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1996.

Taking over as Chief Aerodynamicist from Adrian Newey in 1996, Geoff led development of the FW19 as the team took another World Constructors’ Championship title in 1997. He remained with Williams for a further four years, winning races from the start of a partnership with BMW in 2000, before making the switch to BAR in 2002.

As Technical Director, Geoff played an integral role in the BAR team’s rise up the F1 order, culminating in a second-place finish in the 2004 Constructors’ Championship standings. In 2007, Geoff would move to Red Bull Racing, helping the team move from mid-pack to challenging for regular race wins before stepping down as Technical Director in 2009.

Following a brief spell at the all-new Hispania Racing Team, Geoff returned to Brackley, now operating under the Mercedes name, at the end of 2011, adding six more Constructors’ titles to his tally as the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team claimed an historic run of consecutive crowns from 2014 to 2019.

Since returning to Brackley, which particular moment sticks out the most in Geoff’s mind? “Standing on the podium at Monza, one of the truly ‘classic’ F1 tracks, and receiving the Constructors’ Trophy for the team. A truly memorable moment looking down on a start-finish straight full of boisterous Ferrari fans!”

Engineering Director

Nationality: British
Date of birth: 23 December 1959
Place of birth: Southampton, UK

Career History

2020 Director of Commercial Engineering, Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team
2017 Director of Digital Engineering Transformation, Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport
2011 Technology Director, Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport
2010 Technical Director (Consultant), Hispania Racing
2007 Technical Director, Red Bull Racing
2006 Technical Director, Honda Racing F1 Team
2005 Technical Director, BAR Honda
2002 Technical Director, BAR
1996 Chief Aerodynamicist, BMW Williams F1
1990 Aerodynamicist, Williams Grand Prix Engineering
1990 CFD Consultant, Leyton House Grand Prix Team
1987 Hydrodynamicist, Blue Arrow America’s Cup Team
1982 Scientific Officer, British Maritime Technology