This week on the Driver Development Roundup you will learn about the importance of building a quality team around you to assist you in reaching your motorsport goals.
You will also find out about a new career advancement program from an IndyCar winner, the identity of the 2024 Porsche Junior and the 3 winners of the Women in Motorsports North America’s “Accelerate Her” program.
All this and much more in this week’s edition of the Driver Development Roundup on Motorsport Prospects. Its news aspiring racers can use.
In the video above, Enzo Mucci talks about the importance of getting your team together. “It is hard enough to make it, let alone going it alone. Build you team up with people you can trust and who are good at what they do. But make it worth their while to get them onboard.”
This is one of the reasons that I created the Motorsport Prospects Directory which allows you to build just such a team.
Speed Group, a leading motorsports management company, has introduced an innovative “Career Advancement Program,” featuring new Speed Group member Kevin Lee, alongside Co-Founder James Hinchcliffe. This comprehensive program comprises four key services aimed at providing race car drivers with unparalleled support and guidance throughout their careers.
The Speed Group Career Advancement Program offers a range of services to help individuals grow in their careers. This includes mentorship with Hinchcliffe, where drivers will have both pre and post-event meetings, receive detailed driver reports, and get guidance off the track. The program also covers strategy aspects such as contract review, consultation, negotiation, series and team options, team liaison, and education and support for acquiring sponsors. Media-related support is provided too, including coaching, social media training, and on-event interviews with Lee and Hinchcliffe. Additionally, sponsorship and business-to-business strategy will be provided alongside extended networking opportunities.
More information can be found here.
If you were ever curious about how they select the Aston Martin Autosport BRDC Young Driver of the Year Award, Autosport explains the process. “Strong campaigns in F3, F4 and GB3 got the quartet selected, an initial 10 finalists being whittled down by the judging panel led by Derek Warwick in September. Then there’s a reset. The scores for each were zero when they began the process in October: it’s all about what they did during the assessments that followed, though the level of experience each finalist brings into the competition is always considered.”
Alessandro Ghiretti from France is the new 2024 Porsche Junior in Porsche Motorsport’s successful development program for young drivers. The 21-year-old outshone eleven other candidates during an extensive selection process in mid-November in Portimão, Portugal. Ghiretti is the reigning Rookie champion of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup. In the coming season, he has set his sights on the championship title in the renowned one-make cup with the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, which will be held as support to Formula One.
ITV has an excellent profile of Team BRIT, the world’s only disabled racing team that competes on a ‘level-playing field’ thanks to technology. “I use the team’s world-leading hand control technology and they are the real differentiator between us being able to compete with the able-bodied drivers in the race and not being able to so they make all the difference. There’s no paralympic class in Motorsport, everybody races everybody. It’s a really unique situation but an amazing thing to be a part of.”
Formula 4 is returning to Australia next year with Asian promoter Top Speed announcing a five-round calendar. The series will run as Formula 4 Australia Certified by the FIA, with four rounds in Australia and a season finale at Sepang in Malaysia. Top Speed, which runs the FIA Formula 4 UAE and South East Asia series, and the FIA Formula Regional Middle East Championship, will provide the field of Abarth-powered Tatuus F4 T421 GEN2 cars for the Aussie series. Each race weekend will feature three races with 12 FIA superlicence points up for grabs for the champion.
During the third annual Women with Drive III (WWD III) Summit – Driven by Mobil 1, Women in Motorsports North America (WIMNA) presented some impressive awards to young racers in their “Accelerate Her” contingency program.
The special “Accelerate Her” Contingency Fund Program presented by Busch Light was a new WIMNA collaboration for 2023. It was open to women drivers 21 years and older pursuing racing careers in NASCAR. The monetary rewards were based on race results throughout the 2023 season with a specially created points system that empowers and rewards women drivers based on their merit and race results. The unique system incorporates several factors, including the length of races, the level of competition, as well as the individual racing results.
Julie Jorgenson, of Lakeville, Minn.:
“Accelerate Her helped push me to do the best I could in our 2023 season with the fun challenge of competing with other drivers across the country and finding new drivers to cheer on as we battled against each other. To receive a check for $125,000 towards my racing goals is something I never thought would or could happen. WIMNA is doing so much for young female racers like me, Taylor, Jennifer, and so many more. We are so thankful for their efforts to put women first and help give us a leg up towards our goals.”
Taylor Goldman, of St. Louis Park, Minn.:
“The Accelerate Her program launched me into an ocean of opportunities in motorsports. Not only could I do what I love, but I shared my passion with some of the coolest women worldwide! Being a part of Accelerate Her has boosted my confidence and made me realize I can and will achieve my goals no matter how high the mountain is! My team set me up to race at tracks I could only dream about until now. The miles driven and the long, restless nights were worth every second of this season. I hope to one day give back to women in motorsports and show young female drivers that their future is bright if they put their minds to it. I’m looking forward to representing WIMNA in 2024!”
Jennifer Hall, of Tucson, Ariz.:
“Participating in the Accelerate Her program was the best decision I could have made. I found the program to be extremely beneficial, aiding me in my racing program and creating connections with people in the racing community.”
World Endurance Championship drivers say it’s a “shame” that the LMP2 class has been dropped from the series next year to accommodate a larger field of Hypercar and LMGT3 cars. Autosport interviews them to find out why and how it may affect young drivers.
Multiple LMP2 race winner Gabriel Aubry: “So, hopefully ELMS will come up and be that platform to the young generation coming out of single seaters without a future in F1 or budget to do F2 and F3, because that was my case. I moved here because I loved WEC but also because I had no future in Formula 1. Hopefully this step will remain.”
Autosport also addresses the future questions that GB3 must get right to continue its rise.
“But, while the championship continues to grow, nothing in motorsport stands still for long and plans are already being discussed about the next generation of car. Autosport understands that talks have been held with GB3 teams about when to introduce a new car, with suggestions it could be as early as the 2025 season. If such a move were to happen, it would mean the current car will have only been used for three years – hardly a long innings for such a well-received and competitive machine. The reason to push through with the change is that it could in theory then allow the Tatuus MSV-022 to move down MSV’s single-seater pathway and into GB4. This championship was created in 2022 as a low-budget entry into single-seaters, costing between £120,000 and £150,000 for a season, and currently uses the previous generation of F4 chassis.”
Hew Hoong Liang looks to answer the question of whether Formula 1 has a weird relationship with its rookies. “If all rookies had strong commercial backings and impressive race craft, adding more teams to the F1 grid could help elevate the quality of the grid. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case. Even drivers like Lando Norris — who could win a championship in the right car — have yet to earn a race win throughout his four years in F1.”
Finally, Lewis Hamilton is teaching a Master Class in developing a Winning Mindset. In a series of 12 classes, he guides participants through various life lessons, including discovering personal inspirations, coping with setbacks, fostering teamwork, maintaining discipline, valuing physical health, and mental preparation. This course is designed to unlock one’s full potential beyond the racetrack.