Extreme E announces Racing for All initiative, influenced by Lewis Hamilton Commission report

Extreme E Racing All
Andy Buchanan / AFP pool Getty Images
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With the introduction of a male/female driver lineup for each team, the Extreme E Series has already done much to encourage diversity in racing, but influenced by the eponymous Hamilton Commission findings, they are taking steps to add further variety to the series in an initiative named 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 Lewis Hamilton, seven-time Formula 1 champion and a car owner in Extreme E in a release. “When I first discussed the idea of creating a program with Alejandro [Agag] 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.”

In an effort to lessen the footprint of each event, Extreme E teams are currently limited to five mechanics or engineers at each event. Through the Racing for All initiative, an additional crewmember will be added for members with less than one year’s experience to allow them to gain hands on experience.

One of the goals for the initiative is to reduce barriers for applicants that would not otherwise have this opportunity, particularly females, ethnic minorities and those from a lower socio-economic background. Hamilton comes from a middle-class background and has often expressed gratitude at the sacrifices made by his father.

“We are delighted to launch the Racing for All initiative,” said Agag, Founder and CEO of Extreme E. “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 instill 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.”

The Hamilton Report, titled “Accelerating Change: Improving Representation of Black People in UK Motorsport”, provided 10 recommendations aimed specifically to improve the representation of blacks in UK motorsport, but will be expanded to address Extreme E’s initiative. The three key components are support/empowerment, accountability/measurement and Inspiration/engagement.

“Extreme E’s commitment to environmental and social matters was the main draw for us to join the series and I am excited to see another progressive initiative come to fruition, aiming at removing barriers to motorsport,” said Nico Rosberg, Owner of Rosberg X Racing. “It is a sport that lives from different experiences, backgrounds, views and skills, so we all benefit from welcoming more diverse talent into our team.”

Starting lineup grid for IMSA Petit Le Mans: Tom Blomqvist puts MSR on pole position

Petit Le Mans lineup
IMSA
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IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar championship contender Tom Blomqvist put the Meyer Shank Racing Acura at the front of the starting lineup for the Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Road Atlanta.

Blomqvist turned a 1-minute, 8.55-second lap on the 2.54-mile circuit Friday to capture his third pole position for MSR this season. Earl Bamber qualified second in the No. 02 Cadillac for Chip Ganassi Racing.

Ricky Taylor was third in the No. 10 Acura of Wayne Taylor Racing, which enters Saturday’s season finale with a 19-point lead over the No. 60 of Blomqvist and Oliver Jarvis (who will be joined by Helio Castroneves) for the 10-hour race.

PETIT LE MANS STARTING GRID: Click here for the starting lineup l Lineup by car number

PETIT LE MANS: Info on how to watch

With the pole, MSR sliced the deficit to 14 points behind WTR, which will field the trio of Taylor, Filipe Albuquerque and Brendon Hartley in Saturday’s race.

“We really needed to put the car in this kind of position,” Blomqvist said. “It makes our life a little less stressful tomorrow. It would have given the No. 10 a bit more breathing space. It’s going to be a proper dogfight tomorrow. The guys gave me such a great car. It’s been fantastic this week so far, and it really came alive. I’m hugely thankful to the boys and girls at MSR for giving me the wagon today to execute my job.

“That was a big effort from me. I knew how important it was. It’s just awesome for the guys to give them some sort of reward as well. It’s always nice to be quick. If you do the pole, you know you’ve got a quick car.”

Though WTR has a series-leading four victories with the No. 10, MSR won the Rolex 24 at Daytona and has five runner-up finishes along with its three poles.

The strong performances of the ARX-05s ensure that an Acura will win the final championship in IMSA’s premier Daytona Prototype international (DPi) division, which is being rebranded as Grand Touring Prototype in the move to LMDh cars next season.

Taylor qualified third despite sliding into the Turn 5 gravel during the closing minutes of qualifying while pushing to gain points.

“Qualifying was important for points,” Taylor said. “Going into it, if we outqualified the No. 60 Meyer Shank Acura, they had a lot to lose in terms of championship points. So, we were trying to increase the gap over 20 points which would’ve made a big difference for tomorrow. We would have loved to get the pole and qualify ahead of the No. 60, but in the scheme of the points, it didn’t change a whole lot. I’m feeling good since it’s such a long race, and the No. 10 Konica Minolta Acura team does such a good job strategizing and putting us in a good position.

“I’m very confident in our lineup and our team compared to them over the course of 10 hours. I’d put my two teammates up against those guys any day. I think we are all feeling optimistic and strong for tomorrow.”

In other divisions, PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports (LMP2), Riley Motorsports (LMP3), VasserSullivan (GTD Pro) and Paul Miller Racing (GTD) captured pole positions.

The broadcast of the 10-hour race will begin Saturday at 12:10 p.m. ET on NBC, moving at 3 p.m. to USA Network.


QUALIFYING

Results

Results by class

Fastest lap by driver

Fastest lap by driver after qualifying

Fastest lap by driver and class after qualifying

Fastest lap sequence in qualifying

Best sector times in qualifying

Time cards in qualifying

PRACTICE RESULTS: Session I l Session II l Session III