SPOTLIGHT: James McCabe, Race Engineering Services
Race Engineering Services founder James McCabe is a respected engineer in the Australian motorsport landscape.
A qualified engineer with over 20 years of experience, McCabe has achieved success in top-tier categories of Australian motorsport, including the Supercars Championship.
Akin to many in the industry, his interest in the automotive and motorsport industry commenced in his youth.
“I’ve always had an interest in the automotive industry and motorsport and knew I wanted to work in the industry from a young age,” McCabe said.
Starting out as a motor mechanic, he went to university where he completed a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering at the Ballarat University College.
After completing his degree, he commenced his career as an engineer in the automotive industry.
During this time he worked in many sectors including Original Equipment (OE) car manufacturing, OE tier-one suppliers and the aftermarket.
McCabe began his professional motor racing career with Brad Jones Racing in the V8 Supercar Championship in 2001, with his highlight that year being a second-place finish in the Bathurst 1000 with Brad Jones and John Cleland.
Following his tenure at BJR, he went to Team Dynamik in 2002 where he worked as an Engineering Manager overseeing the build of the car.
In 2003, he joined 00 Motorsport as a Race Engineer on Rodney Forbes’ car, before taking on a role with Britek Motorsport as Chief Engineer and Design Engineer on the Supercars, Development Series and Porsche Carrera Cup Australia programmes from 2004 to 2006.
He then served as Racing Manager of Sherrin Motorsport’s multi-car Carrera Cup team, before going full-time in Race Engineering Services in 2008.
“My feeling was that pretty much every competitor, racing could benefit from having particularly an experienced race engineer on board, but obviously, they can’t afford that, so the inspiration was to provide that service to people on an as-needed basis,” McCabe added.
His business offers services including mechanical design, data acquisition, data analysis, race engineering, vehicle dynamics, lap time simulation and driver performance coaching.
“We offer the full range of from race engineering on a weekend to managing teams, designing and setting up cars to data acquisition and analysis of driver performance coaching, this is our core business” McCabe explained.
Since establishing his business, McCabe has worked in categories including the Dunlop Super2 and Super3 Series, Australian Formula Ford Series, Formula 3, sports sedans and sports cars, as well as disciplines such as rallying and hill climb.
His career highlights include his second-place finish in the 2001 Bathurst 1000, the 2008 Australian Mini Challenge title win, as well as a last to third in class and fifth outright in the 2015 Bathurst 12 Hour, winning the 2019 Carrera Cup Pro/Am title with Liam Talbot at Wall Racing, as well as last year’s Super3 Series with Bradley Vaughan at Anderson Motorsport.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to enjoy success throughout my career,” McCabe recollected.
“I’m very passionate about engineering, I love motorsport, I love running cars and it is nice to achieve victories with my clients.”
As for the future of his business, McCabe has steady plans for growth, while continuing to deliver a quality service for his existing client base.
“We’re looking at getting involved more in preparing and running cars from a factory unit, but the immediate future is to extend the customer base,” he said.
“The most cost-effective way to go racing is to use your data effectively, so that is the message I’m trying to get out there and that is something I can help drivers with.”
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