James Vowles, 38, speaks precisely and doesn’t waste words. In 1995, he says, a racing car collected data on 16 channels. Nowadays, it uses 50,000. “Data processing and machine learning will fundamentally change our work,” he says, “and we’re only just getting started.” The trick is to interpret the data correctly. Computers are already of vital importance when interpreting data, James Vowles says, “but ultimately we’re the ones who have to gauge or anticipate the race situation. We are still better at that than any computer.” So the critical factor is still the human element.