A DUBLIN 15 native is swapping life in the army for life in the fast lane after securing a job with the Mercedes Formula 1 team.
Eamonn Slattery, from Fortlawn, will move to Brixworth –near the Silverstone race track – in September to take up a job helping to design engines for the team.
Eamonn joined the army when he was 17 years old and completed a mechanical apprenticeship during his seven years of service.
He then won a place studying engineering in Trinity College which has led to him securing a job that would be a dream for many.
Remarkably, Eamonn told The Gazette that he had little interest in Formula 1 while he was growing up.
He said he only: “Watched it every now and then because I was interested in engineering.”
However, he became more interested after he helped to build a car as part of his college course.
“I went over to the Netherlands as part of my college course,” he said.
“They had this thing called Formula Student where you build a car and all the universities compete against each other.”
The car was successful and Eamonn found himself becoming more interested in racing.
“When we built our own car, it was much more interesting,” he said.
This prompted him to apply for the graduate position with Mercedes – an application that proved to be successful.
“I just chanced my arm and said, ‘ah sure I’ll apply and see what happens’,” he said.
“Sometimes you’ve just got to stick your neck out.”
While people are unlikely to see Eamonn on television as he won’t be part of the pit crew, he will still play a vital role on Grand Prix weekends.
“They have a mission control place in the factory that we’re in and it’s all done live,” he said.
“The engine has to be specifically done for each track and for the conditions and the weather.
“There’s a constant flow of data.”
This data is analysed and simulations are run on a rig in the factory, with adjustments and advice then being relayed back to the pit team.
Eamonn said that he is excited about the prospect of moving to England and taking on exciting challenge and he hopes that his girlfriend will join him when he moves over.
“I wouldn’t have been able to get the job if it wasn’t for my parents and girlfriend having the patience to support me all the way through my degree and masters,” he said.