Last week Daily Sportscar published an excellent post by DSC Deputy Editor Stephen Kilbey called “Concentrate On The Little Victories” (a highly recommended read) with the central point being that, in these times of uncertainty where nobody truly knows what will happen, we will in fact get through this. As he rightly points out:
This is not the time to be anything other than positive, because we’re all in the same boat. Now is the time to concentrate on the little victories.
In that vein I wanted to point out just a few of the little victories I have heard about over the last week. Please feel free to add yours in the comments section or on the Motorsport Prospects Facebook page.
- The explosion of eRacing. When motorsport series around the world started (rightfully) cancelling and postponing racing on the track, a strange thing happened. Instead of biding their time waiting for the season to start once things returned to “normal”, a lot of series jumped on the eRacing bandwagon and you know what? It has been a welcome and even fun diversion. Whether it was the The Race All Star Battle, Not the Bah GP, Sepring SuperSaturday, eNASCAR’s Pro Invitational from Homestead or the new Indycar iRacing Series, FR Americas iRacing Invitational or the SRO E-Sports GT that were announced, eSports have taken ahold of the motorsport communities’ imagination. While in no way a substitute for the real thing, these online competitions have given almost everybody in the community something to cheer about and have been a welcome relief from the bleak daily news. Look for this trend to accelerate even as real on-track racing returns. Racer publish a great eSports calendar to get you up to speed on what is happening.
- Out of the ashes of the canceled St Pete’s Indycar Grand Prix emerged a silver lining. Motorsport charity Karts for Kids raised $154,000 for the local John Hopkins All Children’s Hospital, a charity which drivers like Sebastien Bourdais, Scott Dixon, Josef Newgarden, Pato O’Ward, Oliver Askew, Dalton Kellet, Santino Ferrucci and Zach Veach, Spencer Pumpelly, Trent Hindman, Tristan Vautier, Kyle Masson, Jan Heylen, James French, Kyle Kirkwood and Sabre Cook were very much involved. Well done to all!
- With races cancelled and postponed, a lot of motorsport careers are deeply affected by this pandemic, none more so than by the freelancers whose very livelihood is threatened. Daily Sportscar decided to do something about it with their Let’s Get Through This: Freelance Talent Available initiative. Open to freelancers, they can post a brief description of their skillsets and availability (does not have to be motorsport specific) plus contact details and Daily Sportscar will publicize their availability, completely free of charge, through their website and social media channels. A great example of the community helping each other through a rough time.
- Motorsport social media Pro Jacki Warnock has also created a Facebook group called The World Under Safety Car where she has taken the initiative to reach out and establish a directory of relevant support services to those reeling from the effects of the motorsport industry grinding to a global halt over the matter of just a few days. You can find the group here.
Understanding that this is a global medical issue of severe emergency, motorsport teams and professional have gotten involved in helping out in a multitude of ways:
- F1 Teams are contributing by starting ventilator production.
- The parent company of Core Autosport, Composite Resources has transitioned to manufacturing face masks, a vital need of healthcare workers and others on the frontline of the pandemic.
- Over in Australia, Supercars team owner Ryan Walkinshaw says the Walkinshaw Automotive Group is ready to help Australia face a potential shortage of hospital ventilators.
- Finally, Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus has offered to make their Danbury, CT facility available for use as a hospital if needed to treat patients of COVID-19.
These are just a few examples of how the motorsport community is dealing with this unprecedented emergency. We are a community of caring, hardworking, extremely intelligent people who, while extremely competitive on the track want to do what we can to make a difference. This pandemic is not going away any time soon, but it will eventually subside and when it does, I believe the motorsport community will have played their part in making a difference.
We are all in this together. While sometimes it is easy to get overwhelmed, don’t forget to count the little victories. These little victories are how we will eventually overcome this unprecedented global crisis and in doing so, we may just all get a little bit closer as humans who all occupy the same planet.
Be safe, be smart and be a positive role model. Please.