How would I go about getting a job as a chef for F1 racing drivers?
Heavens to Betsy, now you’re stretching me. But I am a determined and resourceful lifestyle consultant, who takes his duties seriously, and who can ping a mean search request into the bargain.
First of all, you would need to think about the kind of food that Formula One drivers eat before racing. According to F1 journalist James Allen, who has written at some length on the subject, fish and chicken are the staple ingredients, while dairy products and overly sugary dishes are to be avoided. Pasta is recommended, but only if served without tomato sauce, “as the after-taste becomes metallic and very unpleasant when racing“. Sushi is a popular choice, as is “carpaccio of salmon trout, followed by a short-braised fish dish“.
Next, you’ll need to build up a decent – indeed, an exceptional – CV. The current Head Chef of the Lotus F1 team previously worked at high-end London restaurants, including unpaid work at Gordon Ramsey’s three-starred gaff, which led to a full-time position. Be prepared to work tough gigs, in preparation for an equally tough job; in this guy’s case, this involves cooking three meals a day for 45 engineers, seven days a week, in a team of just two. You will also need to design and prepare regular five-course tasting menus, served to guests, VIPs and even heads of state, as often as three times a week. Your working day will start at 6am, and it will end at 10pm. Oh, and don’t expect a hefty remuneration package, either; average catering salaries are around the £20,000 mark, although it’s reasonable to expect that F1 types can afford to pay higher.
Still keen? What, really? OK, here’s a job. You’ll be based at Burghley House in Stamford, which is a rather sweet little town in Lincolnshire. The duties don’t sound too specialised, so this could make an ideal entry-level position. Then, who knows, you could soon be making headlines in regional newspapers in Cornwall!