We have yet to examine the role of the four technicians assigned to #75 WRX STI. The techs are key to keeping #75 WRX STI in top competitive shape. You’ll find a profile of Shaun Jacobs, who is the lead technician (number one) for #75, …
Lead Technician Shaun Jacobs’ work with the car begins long before it turns a wheel on a rally stage. He explained, “I’m responsible for making sure the car is built to our engineer’s detailed spec sheet for the event, making sure the service truck has its full inventory of spare parts and hardware and that all the spares are built to the correct specification. I also make sure the other technicians know what corner of the car they are working on for the event.
“Then it’s my responsibility to oversee those other technicians during the event and make sure they are getting everything done and working together most efficiently.”
Once in the car enters service, the technicians take over, having been briefed before the car arrives. Jacobs sums up his responsibilities: “At events, I work with the driver, David Higgins, and our team engineer, Jonathan Carey, to make sure the other technicians and I get all the maintenance and car setup changes done during our service time.”
The team of technicians has to be ready for anything out of the norm when a car comes in for service. For instance, Jacobs’ team changed a rear differential during a service at the Olympus Rally. Jacobs reflected on that: “I do remember that service. The issue for concern was detected and shown to Jonathan and me. At that point the decision was made to change it. Changing a rear diff takes about eight minutes, so we had plenty of time.
“Once the service was done, the diff that was removed was inspected and nothing was actually wrong with it, so it went back into the spares kit on the truck.”
When asked if he ever feels like he’s completely finished with the car after service, Jacobs replied, “Sometimes we would like more time, but we are limited to the rally organizer’s service time. We have a great team at SRT USA and always do our best to send the car out the way it started the event.
“There have been times when we are doing last-minute things as the car is coming off the jack stands and just trying to squeeze in a few more things, but it’s very rare that we do not accomplish all of the critical service work in the allotted time.”
“I’m the # 1 tech, which is Lead Technician, on the SRT USA STI rally car driven by David Higgins. I oversee all work done to the car. I’m responsible for the overall maintenance, upkeep, set-up, re-prep, cleaning, repair, and on-event service of the #75 STI rally car.
I work closely with the team manager, engineers, fabricators, various specialists, and team members to develop, maintain, service, and prep the team’s rally cars, specifically Higgins’ car this season.