I had so much content to post in last week’s Sustainable Motorsport Round-Up that I had to carry some over to this week. Today I look at the bigger motorsport picture, some series news, examples of green tech sponsorship, a lot of informative videos and webinars and more. I even have details on a bio fuel-powered race car you can buy. Enjoy!
The Big Picture
Sometimes I tend to get bogged down in what certain series are doing without taking a more holistic view of the complete motorsport ecosystem and how what is being worked on generally across the sport can have a positive impact on society as a whole. Here are a few articles, videos and podcasts that will help you gain that wider perspective.
- Recently I attended the second Green Racing Virtual Summit featuring an amazing array of guests put on by Green Racing News, one of my go to sources for sustainable motorsport news. Below you will find a replay of the Summit. You can also go to the Green Racing News YouTube page for videos of individual sessions. If you want to watch a replay of the inaugural summit, you can see it here. Whenever I attend these webinars I am always reminded about how complex the issue is and how innovative motorsport continues to be in finding solutions. So grab some popcorn and settle in. It is well worth the time to watch.
- If you have not subscribed yet, I highly recommend The Sustainable Motorsport Podcast featuring Tristan Niesslein from Niesslen Sustainability Partners and Jess Shanahan from Racing Mentor. Tristan was kind enough to write an incredibly informative two-part article for Motorsport Prospects called Sustainability, Partnerships and the Racing Driver (Part 1, Part 2). This podcast will make my updated list of Podcasts All Racing Drivers Should Subscribe To which I plan on updating for 2022.
- One recent episode of The Sustainable Motorsport Podcast you should definitely check out now is Sustainable Motorsport with Mark Gallagher. Mark is the author of the recent The Business of Winning: Insights in Transformation from F1 to the Boardroom and has worked in F1 teams and suppliers such as Red Bull Racing, Cosworth Engines, Jaguar Racing and Jordan Grand Prix, to name just a few. He has some important observations related to the changing nature of F1 and broadly for motorsport in the face of climate change, the industry’s response to increasing diversity and managing its business through the pandemic.
- Another prominent F1 figure, Rob Smedley discusses the future of sustainability over at the Airspeeder site.
- Recently, CSM put on a webinar called Sustainability: Safeguarding the Future of Our Planet which is another great webinar to watch. You can view it below.
- Episode 54 of The Sustainability Report podcast features Daniel Bailey, chief executive of Veloce Racing, and Sylvain Filippi of Envision Virgin Racing who discuss motorsport’s sustainable future. You can listen to the podcast here.
- While it is sponsored by Ford, here is a nice overview of Methods to make motorsport more sustainable begin to shine through.
Pioneering Sustainability in Motorsport Questionnaire Launched to the Industry
A Sustainability in Motorsport Questionnaire has been launched to the industry this week. Ignition Human Performance (IHP) and Niesslein Sustainability Partners (NSP) have teamed up to launch this pioneering questionnaire looking at the current state of Sustainability in Motorsport and its associated industries. Once completed, this will look to bring the first assessment of the culture towards sustainability in motorsport organisations and its associated industries and will inform research and a master thesis at the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership – Cambridge University. This questionnaire will go far in supporting leading sustainability thinking in motorsport and be a first of its kind “voice of the industry” whitepaper looking at how the motorsport industry is tackling climate change. It is set to be released in 2022.
The aim of the report will be:
• To identify the current sentiment towards the broad sustainability definition (Environment, Social and Financial sustainability within the motorsport industry.)
• To identify the critical success measures in people performance towards this sustainability definition.
• To assess the readiness of the motorsport industry to undertake the necessary actions to be part of the Net Zero economy.
You can find out more about the questionnaire and find out how you can get involved here.
Looking for a Bio Fuel-Powered Race Car?
If you are you are in luck! A 2004 Nasamax (Reynard) Judd V10 LMP1 is for sale in the Motorsport Prospects Marketplace and it can be powered by traditional racing fuel or bio fuel. Check it out here.
- Formula 1 laudably announced a sustainability plan in 2020 and as they explained, and I have pointed out in past Round-Ups, it is a complicated goal to achieve. Race Fans has an excellent article on what needs to be done, why and how in How the real change F1 needs to cut its emissions was revealed by the pandemic.
- Continuing with Formula 1, Sir Jackie Stewart had some interesting thoughts about sustainability and Formula 1. Nuclear powered engines anyone?
- I have mentioned how the World Rally Championship is adopting sustainable fuel. If you missed that from previous Round-Ups, here are two articles that will bring you up to speed.
- The Dakar Rally is turning out to be quite the demonstration of sustainable motorsport solutions. Recently Hino showed off their 2022 hybrid Dakar truck. You can watch the launch below.
- IndyCar will be testing their new-for-2023 hybrid 2.4-liter twin-turbo V6 motors at the same time as the early rounds of the 2022 championship.
- Leading motorsport as far as seniority goes, Formula E is still pushing the sustainability envelope as it aims to close the supply chain sustainability gap.
- Formula E will also be at COP26 as they showcase sustainability in elite sport.
- Earlier this year I wrote an article detailing some approaches that drivers could use to incorporate green tech companies in their sponsorship plans. Here are two great examples of teams embracing just this approach.
- Super GT in Japan is also joining the sustainable fuels party as they plan to us a ‘Carbon Neutral Fuel’ in 2023. And so is the BTCC!
- Sustainable motorsport is even going hill climbing. Meet the Kiwi building his own EV Hillclimb car in his shed.
- A new all-electric karting series has been announced in Monaco. Called the Monaco E Kart Championship, it intends to start in 2022 and they are booking testing sessions now.
- When we talk about sustainability in motorsport we tend to be talking about the major series like F1, Indycar, Le Mans and the WRC but what about the grassroots? James Attwood of Autocar argues that there should be a push to electrify these series sooner rather than later and it would be fairly easy to do so.
Sustainable Motorsport Tech
There are some incredible technical advances being made in the name of sustainable motorsport that will eventually benefit society as a whole. They also present a number of challenges. Here are just a few.
- New range of bio composite products for motorsport from Retrac Group
- Make the Case: ICE vs. Electric Motors
- Battery cells are the combustion chamber of the future
- FIA plenary session highlights challenges of sustainable motorsport powertrains
- YCOM’s pioneering electric race scooter adopted by all-new eSkootr Championship
- Hemp fibre introduced in the Giulia ETCR’s body
- Metal substitution for weight reduction: our automotive bracket for carbon cars
Sometimes all it takes is to lead by example
Walking the talk is one of my favourite phrases as it truly demonstrates the difference between talking about sustainability and doing something about it. What we do does not have to be developing a new type of solar panel, living off the grid or forgoing electricity. It can be as simple as picking up your trash. Here are some motorsport-related examples. Notice the trend?
- Aston Martin F1’s Sebastian Vettel Determined to Save the Planet, One Hot Dog Wrapper at a Time
- Sebastian reveals new crash helmet for the Turkish Grand Prix
- Vettel in full: Society, activism and why F1 risks ‘disappearing’
More Sustainable Motorsport News
- Formula E team Envision Virgin Racing teamed up with Kids Against Plastic for their Waste Not, Want Not, – Kids Lead the Race Against Climate Change initiative. They built a scale replica Formula E race car from single use plastic waste.
- As a driver you are always on the lookout for new sponsorship opportunities so you should be aware that Brand demands for sustainability credentials dramatically outstrip rights holder and agency priorities.
- Nico Rosberg’s Green Tech Festival is coming to London in 2022. They then plan to hold one in New York City.
- Motorsport UK has committed to the United Nations Sports for Climate Action Framework.
- Check out Motorsport: the unexpected driver of sustainable transformation video below for a great talk featuring Extreme E Founder and CEO Alejandro Agag, Co-founder of Global Optimism and former Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC (2010-2016) Christiana Figueres, nine-time World Rally champion and driver for X44 Sébastien Loeb plus Extreme E Legacy Programme Leader Louisa Tholstrup at a discussion which took place as part of the Goals House schedule at UNGA 2021.
- We are seeing a lot of cryptocurrency companies sponsoring sport including motorsport but the question has to be asked, Is cryptocurrency sponsorship too dirty for the greener image F1 wants to cultivate?
- The September 2021 issue of Professional Motorsport World have some great articles on Synthetic Fuels and Hybrid and Electric powertrains.
- Epartrade has a great double feature of sustainable motorsport webinars coming up on November 3rd, 2021. The first is Episode #127 – “Motorsport Electrification – From Start To Cutting Edge Battery Technology” by E-MERSIV. The second is Episode #128 – “Countdown to Green Innovation at Record Speed – Electrification Moves Into Motorsports” by NEDRA (National Electric Drag Racing Association). Full details can be found here.
- Finally, the November 2021 issue of Racecar Engineering has some great sustainable motorsport-related content including Total’s all-new sustainable fuel for Le Mans, Insight into the Porsche Mission R project and more. You can get your copy here.
That’s it for this edition of the Sustainable Motorsport Round-Up. Stay safe and I will see you at the track!