DS Virgin Racing applies the three P’s to race bay layout
The all-electric Formula E motor racing championship continues to blossom and, as it does, teams are developing and growing. As one of the founding teams of the series, and one of its most successful with six wins and 15 podiums to date, DS Virgin Racing Formula E Team has recently relocated to larger premises at Silverstone, the home of British motorsport. As part of that relocation it has installed two brand new race bays with the help of System Store Solutions.
This relocation of the team gave it the opportunity to start with a clean slate as far as design of the race bays was concerned and Team and Sporting Manager Leon Price wanted a solution that was right, not just in terms of functionality, but also practicality, “We wanted to maximise the three P’s, Practical, Premium and Professional, as a leading race team we look for excellence everywhere. With this being a new, state-of-the-art, facility it was important for us to have the right product for our guys to do the best job they can. Having worked with System Store Solutions at another race team I made contact again and their quick response with initial design concepts filled me with the confidence they could deliver what we wanted,” says Leon Price.
DS Virgin Racing gave System Store Solution’s a blank piece of paper and handed over the initial task of reviewing the team’s requirements and to develop the race bay layouts to incorporate features that met these three P principles, based on previous experience with race teams from across the various formulas. One example of this was to incorporate sliding doors on some cabinets in the middle of the bays. This simple device meant that there was no encroachment into the bay when the doors were opened, maintaining free space and making storage of larger items much easier. From an aesthetic point of view the cabinets were equipped with power centres with all the sockets aligned vertically, waste bins, rather than being on the end of the bay in view, were hidden, with stainless steel covers and adding that final professional look the cabinets were all colour coordinated. The finished design allows for two race cars to be worked on in each race bay, with a single row of cabinets dividing the two bays, so all tools and equipment are within easy reach of the team’s race engineers.
“Thanks to our extensive experience working with race teams, Leon at DS Virgin Racing felt confident to allow us to develop a solution for the team, giving us virtually free-rein to develop ideas that we knew would work for them. Whenever we get invited in to develop a solution like this we use our knowledge to work with the customer to get under the skin of what they want and need, that way the whole process goes very smoothly, as was the case here,” says David Price, Managing Director, System Store Solutions. “By being able to draw on our experience it allows us to bring elements to the design that a customer may not have even considered without our input that delivers a premium product at the end of the day.”
Central to the installation was the fact that the race bays just didn’t have to look good, they had to be genuinely functional and drive efficiency. The long-term partnership between System Store Solutions and Fami ensured that all these criteria were met with a selection of high-quality storage and work surfaces that delivers what DS Virgin Racing needed.
“We have ended up with an excellent solution that mixes standard storage systems such as drawers for tool storage, but what I really like are the small touches such as the cupboards with sliding doors in the bays that save so much space. We can take parts off the cars, put them in the cupboards and we know exactly where they are when we need them, we have ended up with what is almost like a ‘clear desk’ situation where parts are rarely seen on the worktops, everything is stored away nice and neat, giving a real professional look. All that is down to having the variety of choices of units from System Store Solutions and Fami,” says Leon Price.
A further installation took place after the work on the race bays was complete, with DS Virgin Racing commissioning System Store Solutions to develop two ancillary work areas where sub-assembly of the race cars takes place. These areas now feature substantial workbenches and storage with roller shutter doors, again delivering practical and professional and efficient working environments.