Alpine have announced the formation of a new 'Rac(H)er' programme aimed at increasing diversity within the team's workforce and helping female talent reach F1. At present, women make up just 12 per cent of the company's workforce, and only 10 per cent of the F1 team. As such, Alpine are set to invest in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) courses to encourage women to enter the field. A mentoring programme will then be implemented across all departments of the company to support women in their chosen careers. Alpine's target is to grow the proportion of women in the workforce from 12 per cent to 30 per cent within five years, beginning with the recruitment of 50-50 per cent male-female trainees and graduates.
Alpine's mission to find a female F1 champion
Alongside Alpine's STEM-related push, the team also want to help guide female racing drivers to F1. Of the 885 F1 drivers who have raced in the premier class over 72 years, only six have been women. Alpine will use their dedicated Academy to "train future F1 female champions" through a "comprehensive roadmap" of racing and testing plans and physical and mental training. Alpine will also conduct physical, mental and wellness scientific studies "to identify the training needs of these promising drivers to bring them to a competitive level in Formula 1". "Substantial resources" will be allocated to the programme in a bid to give female drivers "the same chances to succeed" and to move through karting, F4, F3 and F2, before arriving in F1.
Alpine aiming to make "real progress" with new programme
Alpine CEO Laurent Rossi explained the thinking behind the team's latest move. "Our role, as a Formula 1 team and a brand of the Renault Group, is to commit to making our ecosystem more inclusive and making diversity our strength," he said. "We are aware of the need for a profound transformation of both the sport and the industry so that all talents can flourish in the future. "By launching Rac(H)er, this long-term transformation programme, we hope to be joined by all the players in the sector, because it is only by uniting that we will be able to make real progress. And that would be our real success."