Transition of Raikkonen’s Former Race Engineer to F1 TV’s Newest Pundit

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In 2021, Simon-Chautemps concluded a 14-year tenure in Formula 1, but his involvement in motorsport continues through his JSC7 consultancy, where he remains deeply engaged.

He is currently offering his expertise to the French team Sainteloc as they transition to single-seaters and collaborating with the German race data provider Paceteq. Simon-Chautemps is active in motorsport engineering recruitment and engages in public speaking engagements focusing on leadership.

While maintaining his consultancy, Simon-Chautemps has also been sharing his technical insights with Formula 1 viewers.

His journey into broadcasting commenced with French broadcaster Canal+ in 2022, and following a successful test run with F1 TV in Brazil last year, he has been confirmed for further appearances in 2024, including at the recent Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

Reflecting on his career transition, Simon-Chautemps shares, “I always wanted to create my own motorsport consultancy company. I worked nearly 15 years trackside in F1, and then Kimi decided to retire around September 2021. I don’t want to say that was a trigger, but that was a big part, and then on top of that, I had been living in Switzerland with Sauber for five years with COVID-19 in the middle.”

In his role as JSC, Simon-Chautemps faces the challenge of distilling complex race weekend processes into clear and understandable language for viewers, a task reminiscent of a race engineer’s communication with their team and driver.

“There are a lot of parallels between communicating with the driver and a team and expressing what you want to say on TV,” he notes. “On TV, the challenge is to explain very technical matters in a way that casual viewers would understand it.”

Simon-Chautemps acknowledges the steep learning curve but expresses gratitude for the support received from Canal+ and F1 TV.

He emphasizes the importance of technical knowledge, effective communication, and resilience in a race engineer’s role, drawing from his experiences working with drivers like Kimi Raikkonen, Marcus Ericsson, Romain Grosjean, and Jolyon Palmer.

Speaking about his interactions with drivers, Simon-Chautemps emphasizes the importance of understanding their individual needs and preferences to optimize performance.

He recalls memorable moments with Raikkonen and Ericsson, highlighting the necessity of creating a strong bond with drivers and providing support during challenging times.

Reflecting on his time with Raikkonen, Simon-Chautemps dispels the notion of the Finn being difficult to work with, praising his commitment to technical discussions and passion for racing. He also shares anecdotes illustrating their interactions during tense race moments, underscoring the mutual respect and camaraderie between them.

Simon-Chautemps concludes by emphasizing the importance of setting realistic expectations and finding fulfillment in achieving team objectives, regardless of the competitive landscape.

He stresses the value of teamwork, resilience, and continuous improvement, lessons he aims to impart to his children and fellow motorsport enthusiasts.

Also read: Formula 1 Decides Against Transitioning to 16-Inch Tyres for 2026

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