Inspiring the next generation: Alfa Romeo F1 Team KICK welcomes FIA Girls on Track
Alfa Romeo F1 Team KICK opened its Albert Park facilities, for the second consecutive year, to a large delegation of FIA Girls on Track, the programme, ran by Motorsport Australia, aimed at promoting gender equality in motorsport and inspiring the next generation of female drivers, engineers, team managers and fans.
The FIA Girls on Track group were hosted by the team during the Australian Grand Prix media day, meeting key team personnel and the drivers for some inspiring discussion on life in the paddock and at the team’s headquarters. The participants were also able to get a first-hand experience of the workings of a Formula One team during a visit to the team’s garage, accompanied by one the team’s Computational Fluid Dynamics engineers, Krystina Emmanouilides – herself an ambassador of Motorsport Australia’s FIA Girls on Track programme.
Alfa Romeo F1 Team KICK is making a tangible effort to help the sport towards a sustainable, diverse and inclusive future: the team is planning a range of activities designed to support career development for younger generations. As part of these efforts, aimed at inspiring and empowering young women, and as an integral part of the FIA Girls on Track programme, Emmanouilides will also offer a year-long mentoring opportunity to one of the young participants to the visit – a direct action at the grassroots level to help grow a new generation of women in motorsport.
Krystina Emmanouilides, CFD Engineer of Alfa Romeo F1 Team KICK: “As the diversity of the F1 fanbase grows, there are an increasing number of young girls interested in pursuing a career in motorsport. Initiatives like the FIA Girls on Track are important to show young girls the wide range of roles that are available within our sport. One of the ways we can increase the number of women coming into the workforce is to promote the sport and industry at a “grassroots level”. Seeing first-hand what it means to be doing these jobs in the team can go a long way into inspiring the next generation of engineers, marketers and even drivers. Having women in these positions to serve as role models is extremely important to show them that women are already thriving in the industry, and they can too. I’m really looking forward to mentoring one of the girls I met today: hopefully, one day, she’ll be here in the paddock doing the same.”
FIA Girls on Track is a grassroots educational programme that introduces 8- to 22-year-old girls and young women to the variety of career opportunities in motor sport through a set of enjoyable educational activities, from karting slalom to media tutorials, practical STEM activities or fitness workshops. A career booklet was also published in 2020 that showcases 22 different motor sport careers and role models.