|COO, Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula 1 Team
|Position Last Year
Rob Thomas is the Chief Operating Officer of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team.
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Rob’s automotive career started at just 16 years old when he left school to start an apprenticeship with Jaguar Cars. He studied Mechanical Engineering at Coventry University and, at 22, was working for the Dutch oil and gas company Shell as a Drilling Engineer.
After five years working on oil rigs, Rob Thomas returned to dry land and joined Rover-BMW as a Project Manager. In 1998, he moved to TRW Aeronautical Systems Group as Operations and Project Manager. Four years later, he was appointed Vice President of Lean Enterprise at GKN Aerospace Services, focusing on operational improvement.
Rob’s motorsport career kicked off in 2005 when he joined Mercedes-Ilmor. Working with Ola Källenius and Andy Cowell, Rob played a key operational role as the organisation successfully morphed into Mercedes-Benz High-Performance Engines (now Mercedes AMG High-Performance Powertrains), including powering Lewis Hamilton to the 2008 Drivers’ Championship title.
Recognised for his role at Mercedes HPE, Rob was head-hunted in May 2010 to join the fledgling Mercedes team as Chief Operating Officer. Describing his role in layman’s terms, Thomas says it’s “to make sure we manufacture, build and test a car that will be capable of winning races and championships”.
It was crucial to pulling the team together operationally as it rapidly expanded in the early Mercedes years, and Rob’s work was eventually richly rewarded. The group claimed a historic six title doubles, winning 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019 Constructors’ and Drivers’ Championships.
What makes working at Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team unique for Rob? “A level of teamwork that is unparalleled anywhere else.”prev View full list next