Australia’s first Indigenous motorsport team Racing Together hit the tracks at Morgan Park Raceway during the last weekend in August and was surprised with a personal message from a Formula 1 World Champion.
Seven-time world champion winner Lewis Hamilton, who has been an advocate for diversity and improving the representation of black people in motorsport, handwrote a message on a page from Auto Action magazine, which featured an article about the team:
“To Racing Together, I am inspired to see you all coming together and the work you are putting in. Keep pushing, keep chasing your dreams. So proud of you. Best wishes, Lewis Hamilton 44”.
The Racing Together team finished 22nd, 24th, 21st and 21st among a field of around 40 closely-matched budget racers in four events, with Braedyn Cidoni driving.
All hands were needed to repair significant front-end damage to the Hyundai after a collision in race two.
Racing Together was launched last year by Garry Connelly and his wife Monique to create opportunities for Indigenous candidates aged 12-16 to pursue motorsport careers as either drivers or race crew members.
Olympian and silver medallist Taliqua Clancy sits on the board for the program and will work as a mentor to the participants.
“As one of Australia’s most successful Indigenous sportspeople, Taliqua will be an invaluable addition to the Board as the Racing Together project continues to develop, and an inspirational mentor to our young team members,” Ms Connelly said.
The 10 Racing Together team members are now preparing their car for their next race meeting in November and are currently completing the build of a second car to be entered into races next year.
Open days for potential candidates to join the 2022 Racing Together program will be held at Norwell Motorplex, Queensland on November 7 and 14, with more information to come.
By Teisha Cloos