As I announced last Friday, the Motorsport Prospects Weekly Debrief will now be published on Mondays. This should be a perfect way for all race drivers to start their week with news and views they can use. This week is packed so here we go!
Driver Development News, Tips & Techniques
- After the Formula 1 “race” at Spa, the debate has revolved around wet weather racing and essentially when it is considered to be “too wet” to race. Enzo Mucci has his own thoughts based on experience with 5 expert tips to help you race in the wet.
- The Extreme E series has announced that their Rookie Invitational test will take place on Monday 25 October 2021 following the fourth round of the inaugural Extreme E season in Sardinia, Italy.
- McLaren Applied has announced their support of two Formula Student teams. According to PMW Magazine:
- Matthias Dank, director of motorsport at McLaren Applied, said, “At McLaren Applied, it’s important for us to support the next generation of technical talent to enter the competitive world of motorsport. Motorsport has several feeder series to bring driver talent into the premium leagues of professional racing; however, there are fewer routes to encourage engineers and technicians into the sport. The past years have shown that Formula Student is one of the key stepping stones for young engineers and technicians to follow their ambitions and enter motorsport.
- Mazda Motorsports has published Top 20 Reasons to Join the Spec MX-5 Challenge. With that in mind, No Money Motorsports asks Spec Miata vs Spec E30 – Which is the BEST spec racing class? 13 factors to see what is best.
- Daniel Ricciardo publishes some really insightful posts on driver development and especially mental preparation and conditioning. This is no different as he sends a “Message To My Younger Self” on the eve of his 200th Grand Prix.
- Motorsport Insurance is something that I have covered before on the Motorsport Prospects Blog before. Ross Bentley over at Speed Secrets answers the question “How much does track day insurance cost, and is it worth it?“
- The FIA Girls on Track – Rising Stars program has kicked off with its second season with the announcement of the 28 participants from 5 countries. As it was last year, the program is supported by the Winfield Racing School.
Diversity & Inclusion News
The issues of diversity and inclusion have grown in importance in recent years as the conversation has moved from admitting that it is an issue to how best to approach it with viable solutions. The bottom line is that everybody should be welcome to participate in the sport regardless of country of origin, ethnicity, faith, sexuality or gender. One thing that we have to remember though is that motorsport is expensive so investments will have to be made to ensure that any programs that are developed “walk the talk” and this applies by definition to any driver development program that aims to make a real impact.
Here are just a few articles on diversity and inclusion in motorsport that caught my eye. If you do not think this is an issue, I urge you to read the experiences of people like those featured in these articles in order to get an understanding of what they are experiencing. It is only through listening and understanding that we can then put forth solutions that work.
- The W Series continues to polarize. Some see it as a necessity in order to give women exposure in the sport, others see it as an unnecessary segregation of the sport between sexes. FIA Women in Motorsport Commission head Michèle Mouton made her thoughts known and received criticism back on what many felt were here negative comments regarding the series.
- The NHRA has been very progressive when it comes to women competing in the sport and they comprise a large chunk of the 12 Future NHRA Stars with the Talent to Make It Big.
- Over in stock cars, up and coming Arab-American woman racer Toni Breidinger is making a big impact on and off the track but she explains the difficulties she has faced directly as a result of who she is and how she deals with it. “Even if you don’t want them to see you as any different, people do see you as different,” she says. “It’s hard to gain respect from some people and you do sometimes get comments, but you need to have confidence in yourself to be able to block those comments out.”
- I could never understand how for some people, somebody’s sexuality could be an issue in doing their job whether that be working in an office or racing a car but it is and Racing Pride’s Richard Morris explains how it is, how he has dealt with it and the mission of the organization he founded, Racing Pride.
- Here are some great articles delving into the particular experiences of people of color in motorsport, something that was discussed in depth in my interview with Carol Glenn of Next Racing Generation.
Part of what I am working on with the Motorsport Prospects Directory is to include a comprehensive global listing of driver development programs which will include Diversity & Inclusion programs. Look for more details to be announced soon.
The Business of Being a Race Driver
The work of a race driver does not end on the track. Motorsport is expensive and in order to get the money to enable you to race you need to work hard to make it happen as it is the key to success in the sport. Here are some resources that may help.
- Jess Shanahan of Racing Mentor has announced the launch of her Sponsorship Success Academy and registration is now open. You can get the full details here. The course will feature topics and resources such as:
- A personalised learning plan to keep you on track
- 40+ templates in the Template Library
- Feedback from the Racing Mentor team
- 1:1 coaching
- And loads more!
- MotiV8 Training has two courses coming up that will help you in your off-track business work.
- The first is a webinar on Public Relations and takes place on September 29th. You will learn:
- What is Public Relations
- How to get exposure in a pandemic
- Find out Who to contact
- What to send to prospects
- The second is a Sponsorship Masterclass and takes place October 27th. In it you will learn:
- What is Sponsorship?
- Who to Contact
- Finding contact details
- Identifying benefits to offer sponsors
- The first is a webinar on Public Relations and takes place on September 29th. You will learn:
- Race driver and social media expert Megan Lingner has written an excellent article on How to Find Your Niche as a Racer.
- When looking at motorsport sponsorship from the sponsor’s perspective, here are Five Reasons Sponsors Should Consider an Umbrella Sponsorship Portfolio.
- Check out the work above that RideHVMC | Honos achieved with the help of Ikoniqa and their motorsport sponsorship decks.
- In the UK, Motorsport UK has selected the Tatuus chasis and Abarth engine for the British F4 series in 2022 while over in America new USF4 and Formula Regional Americas technical director Aaron Coalwell discusses his priorities ahead for both series.
- In New Zealand a new Super GT series has been announced for 2022 with a full grid of 30 cars expected for the first season. According to New Zealand racing site Talk Motorsport, Super GT in New Zealand makes sense.
- Unfortunately, not all the news is good news as the Toyota Racing Series for 2022 has been called off with only the New Zealand Grand Prix being run. At least the Best Bars Toyota 86 Championship looks to be going ahead.
- In sports cars, single-seater powerhouse PREMA Powerteam and sports car team Iron Lynx are set for a combined 2022 WEC LMP2 programme while it looks like Audi will not run a factory LMDh team in the IMSA Championship.
- Speaking of IMSA, they feel they have an excellent program in place that offers a pathway to the “pinnacle” of prototype racing for any driver or team looking to make the switch or move up.
- In a completely different type of racing car, Caterham outlines their comprehensive (and affordable) Motorsport Pyramid for UK race drivers.
- In Touring Car news, Audi has announced that sales of their new Audi RS 3 LMS have commenced while TC America have reiterated their commitment to TCX despite the fact that there are currently only BMW BMW M2 CS entered in the championship.
- Finally, eSkootr testing is set to progress as YCOM ramps up chassis production.
Esports is becoming an increasingly important factor in motorsport. It serves as a platform to introduce youth to the sport, acts as an incubator of grassroots talent, can be used as a driver development tool and pushes the technological boundaries which brings the costs of high-end simulators down in price and availability. It also is a lot of fun. With that in mind I have added to the Weekly Debrief an Esports section. This is not to be confused with diver simulator training but strictly with what could only be termed as “racing online.”
- Motorsport Games and the ACO have announced a new Esport series as Le Mans Virtual returns with a U.S. $250,000 prize pool and an on-site January finale at Autosport International.
- Here are two great articles on the background and future of iRacing, one of the biggest proponents and facilitators of sim racing globally and an article from CNET on how to build an iRacing PC.
- Claudia Feiner talks about the evolution of Esports in Me, the Gamer: How My Relationship to Games Changed Over the Years.
- Racing teams are starting to take esports seriously as you can tell in “We’ve been able to build real credibility”: Inside McLaren Racing’s expansion in esports and gaming.
- But what about those racing games on your phone? Where do they fit in? The Race asks Is the esports stigma around mobile racing games justified?
Business of Motorsport
- Radical Sportscars has announced that their Radical SR10 smashed all of their sales records and become the fastest-selling model in the company’s history. Meanwhile another sports car manufacturer, Praga Cars confirms the first international partners in their new global Praga Racing dealer network.
- It is always nice to see race tracks being built and expanded so it was great to read about Pacific Raceways’ ambitious $200M expansion.
- Motorsport, like any business has their secrets to protect and Law in Sport has outlined their recommended Top Tips for Protecting Confidential Information and Trade Secrets in Motorsport.
- Integrity in sport is everything and while there is no record of motorsport being manipulated, the FIA has launched their #RaceAgainstManipulation e-learning platform to prevent risk of competition-manipulation. More details in the video below.
- PRI has an excellent report on The STEM Programs Creating Next-Gen Racing Professionals that is critical for the future growth of motorsport.
- As I mentioned above, esports are becoming increasingly important to the future growth of motorsport. They can also be a great business opportunity as explained in They build rigs and a community. Digital Motorsports is a prime example of how sim racing can grow into a business.
From the Motorsport Prospects Archives
Last year I had a great chat with Jesse Gröse of Von Gröse Motorsport Management where we talked about Motorsport and Running a Motorsport Business in the Age of COVID-19. We also touched a bit upon the future of motorsport and it makes a good and thought provoking read.
The Last Lap
In this week’s Last Lap I highlight articles looking at how MotoGP gave back to the local community after the British Grand Prix, the death of motorsport pioneer Jackie Doty, raising money to combat Neurone disease, James Bond is back and so are his cars and more!
- MotoGP donates more than 1,000kg of food to local area after British GP
- Lynx Racing co-founder Jackie Doty dies at 71
- Racing4Charity Raising Money To Combat Motor Neurone Disease
- An Inside Look at the Porsche Design Process
- Bob Bondurant’s School, A Training Ground For Nascar Drivers, Is Ready For A Fresh Start
As a huge James Bond fan, I have been waiting for what seems like years (actually it has been years!) for the next installment of the Bond film franchise, No Time To Die. One of the joys of Bond films are always the cars and Aston Martin in particular feature prominently in Bond’s world. Check out the “License To Thrill” short film below for a taste.
That’s it for this week! Stay safe and I will see you at the track.