For many motorsport enthusiasts around the globe, a career in Formula 1 is an absolute dream come true.
Touring the world, working alongside famous athletes, and working on cars that are pieces of cutting-edge technology and incredible engineering.
The F1 dream that many have is now a reality for former South Eastern Regional College (SERC) student Peter Maze, who works as an engineer for McLaren.
Peter Maze (28) from Aghalee, studied Level 3 Motorsport Engineering at SERC’s Newtownards campus.
He spoke about how motorsport was always an interest of his and how SERC helped develop his knowledge in the field to become a valued McLaren race team technician.
He explained: “From a young age I was always interested in motorsport, more so rallying than anything.
“I remember going to Rally Ireland in 2007 with my dad and brother, which was probably my first memory and introduction to top level motorsport.
“The Motorsport Engineering course at SERC definitely helped develop an interest in the more intricate side of motorsport, not just the hands-on mechanical skills.
“Understanding how mathematics, physics etc can be used in the setup of motorsport vehicles was definitely a good part of the SERC course.”
Highlighting his education path to reach his dream job, Peter believes applying for the course was ‘probably the best decision I made as it started me on the road to where I am now’.
He continued: “When I left school after failing my A-Levels, I didn’t really know what to do.
“Going to SERC was probably the best decision I made as it started me on the road to where I am now.
“The course was excellent for someone who wanted to get more involved in motorsport as opposed to general vehicle maintenance.
“It had all the foundations of motorsport covered from fault diagnosis, setup, engine building and gearbox work as well as the theory behind all of this.”
Talking about his academic and career progression Peter, outlined: “After SERC, I moved to England and studied Competition Car Technology at Myerscough College in Lancashire.
“Whilst studying, I was fortunate to work on the Junior World Rally Championship for two seasons, which resulted in me gaining a full-time job with M-Sport on their WRC programme after graduating.
“I worked at M-Sport for four years, before seeing a job advert for McLaren Race team, and I was fortunate to progress through the interview process to get the job to be where I am now.”
Peter concluded by speaking about some of his favourite aspects to life as an F1 Engineer, he added: “I get the opportunity to travel all over the world, to experience new cultures, food and countries every year, it’s absolutely brilliant.
“Working within the team at McLaren has been good, we’re just like one big family.
“We get on well with each other and all work together to get the results we deserve.
“Without each person in the team, we couldn’t do what we do.”
If you’re interested in Motorsport and would like the chance to develop your knowledge and potentially embark on a thrilling career like Peter, check out our Level 3 Motorsport Engineering course.
Visit www.serc.ac.uk to unlock your future #BetterOffAtSERC.