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Mercedes Formula One team adopts Pure Storage

F1 champions seeks the edge on the track with enhanced data analysis

Mercedes Formula One team adopts Pure Storage
Ability to quickly analyse data about the performance of the cars is core to F1 racing.

Pure Storage, a solid-state array storage vendor, has announced a global partnership with the MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One team.

With Pure Storage, the F1 team is looking to accelerate analysis of data-centric transactions that impact car performance and lap time, with an eye on the mission-critical business applications that underpin the entire organisation.

“We’re delighted to welcome Pure Storage as a partner of the MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team,” said Toto Wolff, Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport. “Technology is fundamental to our success – it enables us to perform across our business and ultimately on track. As we are predicting one of the most challenging and competitive seasons in the year ahead, Pure will give us the power we need to tackle our most demanding data challenges.” 

The MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team requires an infrastructure that is both state-of-the-art and portable. Putting performance-critical workloads at risk of availability in the cloud was a risk the team could not afford. The density and reliability of Pure Storage offered MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS a solution that matched their business requirements.

Today, MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS runs two FlashArray//m70 arrays and four FlashArray//m20 arrays in three pairs, with no single instance anywhere, while leveraging FlashStack CI, Pure’s flexible, all-flash converged infrastructure solution. The workloads running on FlashArray//m70 were initially deployed on FlashArray 450s, until MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS leveraged Evergreen Storage to add 40TB of capacity during normal production and business hours without disruption.

“Pure and The MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team found common ground in a mutual everyday mission – to push the boundaries of what’s possible,” said Jonathan Martin, CMO, Pure Storage. “When fractions of seconds mean the difference between success and second best, the reliability, simplicity and speed Pure Storage delivers is paramount. Pure is proud to provide MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS confidence in the performance of its storage platform, so that the team’s primary focus can be performance where it matters most – on the track.”

MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS sought to future-proof and incorporate new innovation into an infrastructure platform that requires continuous evolution to support the operational demands of a racing organization built to win. Seeking to enhance service availability and prevent disruption, MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS considered a number of different solutions, and ultimately selected Pure Storage. Although MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS initially sought a solution that could address primarily performance issues, the team soon realized it could cut through all performance issues while managing cost, with true simplicity from Pure.

“Before Pure, we virtualised storage to the point where we could introduce whatever vendor was right at the time. We soon realized that building a nuanced architecture on an intricate stack translated into building something far too complex – complexity on top of complexity,” said Matt Harris, Head of IT at the MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team. “The choice was clear once we realized we could eliminate bulky, heavy hardware, improve our performance and actually save money taking the technology with us around the world.”

Everything about The MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team is measured in fractions of seconds. In a world where the ability to quickly analyse data about the performance of the cars is core to the organisation, a tenth of a second delay could mean the difference between winning and losing. In the world of F1 racing, performance leads to success, which is why the team has chosen to rely on Pure Storage to drive meaningful results including:

- Boosts to productivity leading to an accelerated kick-off of a business-critical project initially slated for 2017

- Immediate time to value by getting the Pure Storage FlashArrays up and running in four hours as opposed to the 6-8 weeks required by previous vendors

- 35 percent faster race-related transactions, such as opening race car telemetry files

- Reduced times for backend application processing such as a 95% reduction in SQL query processing times

- Reductions in cost, power and space by replacing 40TB and 26U with 88TB and 6U of Pure systems, resulting in significant logistical savings as the team sets up temporary and remote operations in 21 locations worldwide

- The ability to deliver services quicker, for instance enabling IT to stand up 60 or 70 virtual machines a day versus one or two machines prior to implementing Pure Storage

“Pure Storage’s Evergreen business model removed the anxiety of the traditional storage renewal. It’s a brilliant example of the simplicity you get with Pure and it changes the board-level conversation when trying to propose a new platform,” said Harris. “The typical concerns about future issues – capacity, upgrades, maintenance and how much it will all cost us again – are no longer an issue. We were able to immediately focus on getting the technology in the door and impacting the business as quickly as possible.”

The MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team are the reigning FIA Formula One World Champions. In 2016, they will compete in 21 races around the world, beginning in March in Melbourne, Australia and finishing at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in November. The team’s drivers are the three-time Formula One World Champion, Lewis Hamilton and 14-time Grand Prix winner, Nico Rosberg. 

MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS will participate later this month at the upcoming annual Pure//Accelerate conference, along with other technology and business leaders, who will share in a dialogue about pushing the boundaries of what is possible in their businesses, with customers and through the technology they interact with every day.


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