EXCLUSIVE: Christian Horner opens up on the potential of a female driver reaching the grid… as Red Bull begin new partnership with Rokt and launch initiative to improve diversity in F1
Christian Horner has opened up about the possibility of a female driver reaching the Formula One grid, on the week that his Red Bull team signed a new initiative with Rokt to improve diversity in the sport.
There has not been a female in a Formula One Grand Prix race since Giovanna Amati in 1992, but Red Bull are among the teams now giving more opportunities in a bid to change that statistic.
This season, the W Series will return for another year, an all-female driver category will be launched in the form of F1 Academy, and Jamie Chadwick will continue in her role as a development driver for Williams.
While all positive moves, there does not yet seem an obvious pathway to the grid for a female driver, but Horner is confident that opportunities will arise.
When asked whether he thinks a female could earn a race seat in the years to come, the Red Bull team principal told DailyMail.com: ‘I don’t see why not. I think that the more girls that are getting interested in Formula One, the bigger pool of young drivers that are coming into the sport.
Christian Horner (left) shakes hands with Rokt CEO Bruce Buchanan at their New York launch
Red Bull and Rokt will attempt to give more opportunities for females aiming to get into F1
‘The bigger percentage of that becomes girls getting in at the grass roots, and then why not – you can never say never. I just think it’s great that there’s so many initiatives to get women involved across all aspects of the sport, from driving, to engineering, to operationally.
‘It’s just great to see that enthusiasm. I think Drive to Survive has brought a whole new demographic into following Formula One.’
Red Bull’s partnership with Rokt will see the two organizations work together to foster greater diversity in F1 racing, while also launching a search to recruit female ethletes to join the Red Bull eSports team.
Rokt CEO Bruce Buchanan also sat down with DailyMail.com in New York this week, and when asked his response to whether a female could make it all the way to the top, he made his feelings clear.
‘100 percent,’ he began. ‘I think one of the things that has been interesting on our journey is, wherever you see things that you feel are impossible to break through, how do you actually create role models or things that people can see that will actually change their perspective.
‘It’s no different in any category… when someone has never done something before, or it feels like it’s impossible, and then someone does it, it’s like, “of course, it was always possible.”
Red Bull launched the RB19 in New York on Friday – their car for the 2023 Formula One season
Max Verstappen, Sergio Perez and Horner (left-right) were all present in the Big Apple
‘I think the same will be true for women in F1. I think it’ll happen, it’s just a matter of how do we actually facilitate some of those early adopters coming through.
‘That’s why I think eSports will be good, we’re also trying to sponsor some female mechanics and see if we can get broader talent and diversity. Our business has been very successful tapping into diverse pools of talent.
‘The world’s a better place when we enable everyone to come through and reach their full potential.’
Rokt’s logo will be prominent on the RB19, which Red Bull launched in New York City on Friday morning.
Read more at DailyMail.co.uk