HAMILTON INSPIRES AN INDIGENOUS MOTORSPORTS TEAM

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By Josh Nevett

Formula 1 champion Lewis Hamilton gave his support to Australian motorsport team Racing Together, which achieved its best results to date in the X3 Queensland Championship for Hyundai Excels at Morgan Park Raceway.

The seven-time Formula 1 world champion left a personal message for the team on a copy of the Auto Action magazine Racing Together article after speaking with team founder Garry Connelly, who was a steward at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps during the Belgian Formula 1 Grand Prix.

Known as a passionate advocate for diversity and improving the representation of black people in motorsport, Hamilton was full of encouragement for Australia’s first Indigenous motorsport team.

“For Racing Together, I am inspired to see you all together and the work you do,” read Hamilton’s handwritten message.

“Keep pushing, keep chasing your dreams. So proud of you. Best wishes, Lewis Hamilton 44.

The post preceded the best results of the season for Racing Together who finished 22nd, 24th, 21st and 21st in Round 3 of the Series X3 Queensland Championship for Hyundai Excels at Warwick.

Competing among a field of 40 machines, pilot Braedyn Cidoni guided the team of ten Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander teenagers to the midfield of each race, despite extensive damage to the front after an accident in race 2.

“A lot could have gone better, but we still finished all the races and had our best results so far,” said Cidoni.

“The racing community has been pretty positive about Racing Together and we’re getting great feedback. “

Taliqua Clancy, aboriginal board member for Racing Together, also inspired the team last month when they won a silver medal in beach volleyball at the Tokyo Olympics.

The program was started late last year by motorsport personalities Garry and Monique Connelly, with the goal of creating opportunities for Indigenous people between the ages of 12 and 16 to pursue a career in motorsport as as pilots or racing crew.

Since its inception, the initiative has received strong support from the motorsport community including Roland Dane, Triple Eight Race Engineering Team Director, Ryan Story, Shell V Power Racing Team CEO and Paul Morris , winner of Bathurst 1000.

An agreement was made for the program to expand to other parts of Australia and train participants in advanced driving, racing skills and well-being.

Racing Together will welcome a number of new team members in 2022 after an open house selection process that will take place at Norwell Motorplex on November 7-14.

The project is supported by the national government authority Motorsport Australia and the indigenous organization Gunya Meta.

The final round of the Queensland Excel Cup will take place at Morgan Park Raceway from November 19-21.

For more on the latest motorsport news, check out the current issue of Auto Action. Also be sure to follow us on social media Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or our weekly email newsletter for all the latest updates between issues.



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