Graduate Q&A: Dave Mylett (Engineering)

From the University of Hull to a career in the fast lane.

Dave Mylett graduated with a degree in Mechanical Design Engineering and has since gone on to work in the fast-paced world of Formula 1.

As Structural Analysis Group Leader - Advanced Technologies at Red Bull Racing and Red Bull Technology - he helped to develop the Aston Martin Valkyrie, the company’s first hypercar.

Dave Mylett from Red Bull Racing
Dave Mylett, University of Hull Graduate

What have you done since you graduated?

Dave Mylett from Red Bull Racing in HUFS Workshop

I had a varied start to my career working predominantly in the automotive safety sector, ultimately working hard to break into Formula One. Since joining F1, I’ve worked even harder to establish myself as a leading structural analysis engineer focusing mainly in the world of composite optimisation.

What’s a typical working day at Red Bull?

Dave Mylett from Red Bull Racing in HUFS Workshop

I’m leading a team of engineers to deliver the final stages of the world’s greatest hyper car the Aston Martin Valkyrie. Working in this field of engineering does not always have a ‘typical’ day as everyday can be different. One thing that people do not realise is the hours worked in the F1 arena are insane. It takes a certain kind of person to be successful. People see the glitz and glamour of F1, but what they don’t see is the typical 60-70hour /week!

What do you love about your job?

There are few industries where you can design anything without any cost constraints. One of the greatest things about being an engineer working in F1 / Advanced Technologies is I can design something on Monday, then have that part made and sent half-way round the world, and  running on a leading race car on the TV at the weekend.

What’s been your career highlight?

One of the many highlights for me, happens each year during homologation. Working hard during the winter months to see the car pass all the structural tests without issue. Added to that, was always seeing my drivers walk away from big crashes unhurt, and knowing that my work directly had an influence on that outcome. Also, winning multiple world championships!

Dave Mylett from Red Bull Racing in HUFS Workshop

What’s next?

More of the same, but now in a managerial capacity I’m looking forward to developing the next generation of young F1 engineers.

Q. How did your time at Hull set you up for success?

Dave Mylett from Red Bull Racing

I was lucky enough to study under Martin Raines who developed my stress analysis skills as well as giving me lots of advice about how to break into motorsport. Ultimately, it was Martin who directly influenced my decision to study for a PhD at Hull, and whilst I never wrote up, the experience and skills learned ensured when I left academia I was able to hit the ground running when I started my first commercial role.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into F1?

F1 is extremely difficult to break into, so the best advice is to work hard, be resilient, find out exactly what you want to do in F1, and most of all don’t give up!"

What was your time at Hull like?

I had a great time studying at Hull. I worked hard but also played hard...a good degree with a lot of hard work can get you any job you want!

Dave Mylett from Red Bull Racing in HUFS Workshop
Dave with the Hull University Formula Student team