Extreme E has launched a new initiative that will give teams an additional team member position for “those with less than one year’s professional motorsport experience” in a bid to nurture new talent.
Currently, the all-electric off-road series limits the number of mechanics and engineers in each team to just five, but off the back of schemes like the FIA’s Girls On Track and Lewis Hamilton’s Hamilton Commission – which aims to improve Black representation in UK motorsport – Extreme E has launched its own program called Racing For All.
“We know from the findings of The Hamilton Commission that our industry is a tough place to break into, particularly for those from underrepresented backgrounds, which is why it’s so important that the Racing for All program will be creating genuine opportunities for the next generation,” said Hamilton, who owns the race-winning X44 team in Extreme E
“When I first discussed the idea of creating a program with Alejandro and the Extreme E team, we all agreed that it had to be something which led to real change, and I believe Racing for All does just that.
“I’m so excited to see this program adopted across the paddock, and I can’t wait to see what the first group of Racing for All candidates goes on to achieve.”
Described as an “action-based program that will have a tangible effect on addressing some of those barriers” by the series, Racing For All will provide those with less than a year’s professional motorsport experience an opportunity to make their first steps into the industry at a high level, and gain real-world experience.
Hamilton’s former McLaren teammate in Formula 1 and now fellow Extreme E team owner Jenson Button welcomed the new initiative and Extreme E’s continued push to nurture young talent across the board.
“With all my years in motorsport, I’ve seen first-hand just how vital the push for equality in motorsport and engineering is so it is encouraging to see Extreme E making this issue such a priority,” said the 2009 world champion. “Everyone, no matter what their gender, race, or background, should be able to get involved, and Racing for All will be huge step towards making this the norm.”
The recruitment process for the initiative is being overseen by consultants from EqualEngineers and will work with teams to create a fully inclusive recruitment process. Most teams have already begun that process, with the goal of having people in place for season three next year.
“We are delighted to launch the Racing for All initiative,” said Extreme E founder and CEO Alejandro Agag. “We are fully supportive of the findings of The Hamilton Commission and are working with our teams to provide a clear path for the brilliant engineers and mechanics of the future, who may not so readily have the opportunities to succeed.
“Our goal is for Racing for All to instil an inclusive mindset and a wider recruitment pipeline which enables the next generation of race mechanics and engineers to reach the highest levels of motorsport, regardless of factors such as race, gender or social economic status, and reduce the barriers which exist for certain communities.”