Bernie Collins: strategy risks, racing rewards + the pressure of the pitwall

Nov 29, 2023, 12:01 AM

She didn’t set out to be a Grand Prix-winning Formula 1 strategist, but Bernie Collins raced to the very top. She pulled the strategy strings at Force India, Racing Point and Aston Martin, masterminded an emotional race win with Sergio Perez, and guided Sebastian Vettel to his final F1 podium. 

Bernie tells Tom Clarkson how she and her fellow strategists prepared for races, reacted to the on-track action, and balanced risk and reward to get the best result possible. Bernie remembers her deep-end debut as a race strategist, how competing at the front of the field brings extra pressure, why working at one of F1’s smaller teams ‘made her career’ and what she learned working with Perez, Vettel and Jenson Button. Bernie also explains how an interest in maths and physics led her to study mechanical engineering at university, then to move into motorsport and, ultimately, reach Formula 1

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