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Formula 1's IT crowd: Software engineers power Marussia

20 September 2012 Last updated at 00:06 BST

As Formula 1 drivers get ready for this weekend's Singapore Grand Prix, they will be mentally preparing their post-race press conference comments. Typically in these, stars like Lewis Hamilton, Jensen Button and Fernando Alonso thank the large number of people working behind the scenes.

Computer experts now play a vital role in these teams.

BBC News has been given access to the Marussia team base in Banbury, near the Silverstone race track. The Russian-owned Formula 1 team is one of the youngest on the Grand Prix circuit and wants to start challenging larger rivals like McLaren, Red Bull and Ferrari.

To this end, it has hired veteran engineer Pat Symonds - formerly of Renault F1 - as a technical consultant, and has invested heavily in Information Technology (IT) through sponsor CSC.

Here Pat Symonds explains why aerodynamics research is vital to all F1 teams - and shows the BBC Marussia's "computer brain", one of the UK's most powerful supercomputers which the company hopes will help power it up the grid in time for Russia's inaugural Grand Prix in Sochi, 2014.

Video Journalist: Dougal Shaw

Race and pitstop footage courtesy of Marussia F1. Some of the shells seen in the Marussia garage do not relate to this year's car.

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