MotoGP, Jenny Anderson: we take a look at Marc Marquez's new data engineer

Former kart driver, she worked in F3 and with Magnussen. She was part of the KTM MotoGP project since the beginning and until 2020 she was alongside Pol Espargarò

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Pol Espargarò is not the only one to have left KTM for the Repsol Honda team. His data engineer, Jenny Anderson, will also follow him, but she will not be alongside him but instead Marc Marquez, in place of Gerold Bucher, a long-time member of his team since the days of Moto2.

Jenny was involved in the birth of the Austrian company's MotoGP project right from the very beginning: I joined the project in 2015, before we had a MotoGP bike, and from working in the factory full-time and the electronics department," she said in a KTM blog some time ago. "I have seen the RC16 go from zero to where we are now. I had quite an open role. My manager said “here’s the ECU for the bike we are going to build in the next six months, get something ready so it can run”. So it was a bit of everything, working with the guys on the engine on the dyno, connecting sensors, making test harnesses: it was much more hands-on at that time. Then we started testing with Mika and I was the data engineer for the test team, I then did a year in that same job for Pol and now I’m the strategy engineer for Pol.”

Anderson got into motorsport with four wheels, by following the family passion…

“I grew up in motor racing – she said - My Dad built kit-cars and my older brother got into karting. He was like a god to me and everything he did I wanted to do. At ten I started karting and started doing data almost as a hobby; I never realized it could lead into a job like I have now. I went from having one sensor to measure the RPM on my kart to looking at the gears and analyzing speed on different corner exits. It evolved as I added more sensors and got more information. I volunteered and did work for other people with data. When I left college I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do and ended up going to university quite late; I was 22 when I went to study motorsport engineering at Oxford Brookes University. I was working at a car racing team in F3 at the same time and the World Series by Renault. I worked with Kevin Magnussen in my first year actually. I then worked with them full time until this project came up with KTM.”

Jenny will be the only woman in the garage, but this is not a problem for her…

“From my experience in cars, drivers often bring the money for a single-seater one-make series spot and it gives them a lot of clout about whom they want to work with. They might not want to work with a woman or it’s because your face doesn’t fit or you are English, Spanish or French. Here or anywhere I don’t think gender really comes into it much anymore or no more than any other sport. When I was karting I’d be the only girl in a paddock of two hundred people and I have seen – just in my lifetime – how many more women are now working in motorsport both as drivers or engineering and that can only be positive.”

 

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