HPE SimpliVity powers Red Bull Racing Honda’s sprint to the edge

Red Bull Racing Honda participates in the Formula One circuit and has been a force in the competitive automotive sport claiming eight world championships as of 2020. The team has HPE on board as an Innovation Partner and relies on HPE SimpliVity to support the team’s activities at the edge – in this case it’s the race track.

The dynamics of top-level automotive competition require that a race car be finely tuned for each contest and the different tracks where it runs.

“We need to tear the car apart and rebuild it for a unique configuration for every individual race,” said Matt Cadieux, chief information officer of Red Bull Racing Honda. In order to win, “we need to optimize [the car] for any given racetrack. We’re also improving our tools, methods and software that we use to design, make and race the car.”

Cadieux recently spoke with Dave Vellante, host of theCUBE, SiliconANGLE Media’s livestreaming studio, as did and Omer Asad, vice president and general manager of primary storage and data management services at Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co., in a separate interview. They discussed data at the edge. (* Disclosure below.)

Formula One at the edge

The challenge for Cadieux and his IT team is that Formula One tracks are often in remote locations, this season spanning 23 different locations across the globe. The name of the game is speed, both in the race car and for data processing at the edge. Red Bull Racing Honda relies on a complex set of sensors installed in the car to monitor its performance on the track. The data from these sensors is then processed and available to engineers to make crucial setup changes before the race and decisions during the race. 

“There’s a huge amount of very complicated models that we’re using to optimize our performance and continuously improve our car,” Cadieux explained. “The data and applications that leverage it are really key. It’s a critical success factor for us.”

Red Bull Racing Honda realized it had to find a robust edge processing platform, so it turned to HPE and its SimpliVity solution. The platform provides the foundation for the racing team’s VM and VDI estate in both the central factory and trackside. Access by Red Bull Racing Honda to HPE Simplivity’s solution at both edge and core allowed the racing team to use Citrix Systems Inc. virtual machines and provide engineers access to tools and data remotely.

“We want applications to absolutely fly, get to actionable results quicker, and get answers from our simulations quicker,” Cadieux said. “We saw a 3x speed-up for a lot of our applications. Being able to spin up resources and provision things without being a bottleneck is a big challenge, and SimpliVity gives us the means of doing that.”

Red Bull Racing Honda provides a glimpse into where the edge story is headed. As more devices gather significant amounts of data, businesses will increasingly turn to technology experts for answers on how to manage the information flow at scale with low latency and maximum benefit, regardless of where the device may reside.

“A common consensus is that more than 50% of an enterprise’s data, especially if they operate globally, is going to be generated out at the edge,” according toAsad. “For that, they need a lot more distributed processing. That’s what we see in the industry.”

Watch the complete video interview below. (* Disclosure: Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. sponsored this segment of theCUBE. Neither HPE nor other sponsors have editorial control over content on theCUBE or SiliconANGLE.)

Photo: Mark Thompson/Getty Images for Red Bull Racing

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