Leading energy company Viva Energy has thrown its support behind Racing Together by partnering up with the program for the next three years.
Founded in 2020, Racing Together is aimed at increasing motorsport participation for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youths, with 10 participants to be selected to form a racing team each year and run in a Motorsport Australia state championship.
The mission of Racing Together is to have 30 Indigenous Australians working in the industry within the next five years and 1,000 by 2036.
With the program still in its infancy, Viva Energy’s financial support will now see a further 130 individuals receive special training through intensive two-day courses in areas such as advanced driving, motorsport, racing, wellbeing, self-esteem and STEM subjects.
An exclusive licensee of the Shell brand and having been associated with motorsport for more than 50 years through Dick Johnson Racing, Viva Energy is an experienced player in the sport.
General Manager of Distribution Supply Chain Vince Neville was thrilled to be able to get involved with a program as it promoted both the sport and provides opportunity for Indigenous Australian youth.
“The partnership between Racing Together and Viva Energy ties in closely with our vision for reconciliation as a nation where Indigenous people have equal and equitable opportunities to reach their destination,” Neville said.
“We hope that through our involvement in this program, Viva Energy will be able to drive more equitable opportunities and representation in motorsports.”
Outside of motorsport, Racing Together will also hold classroom-based training on social responsibility, personal health, safety and wellbeing and elementary vehicle mechanics.
Program founder Garry Connelly was proud to have Viva Energy sign on as the latest major partner.
“We started Racing Together late last year with tentative steps, but it has flourished quickly thanks to the support of many in the motorsport and Indigenous communities,” Connelly said.
“We have already put a car on track, run by our first group of 10 Indigenous teenage girls and boys, for two meetings in the Queensland Hyundai Excel championship.
“Racing Together is extremely grateful to commence the new partnership with Viva Energy, a leading energy company that supplies about a quarter of Australia’s fuel requirements, including Shell fuel and lubricants.
“It will enable a significant boost to our activities. Viva Energy will help us train more than 130 young people in all aspects of motorsport participation on- and off-track, and also mentor them in important personal matters such as education, health and well-being and road safety.
“We’ll select a group every year to form a team comprising mechanics, drivers, strategists, managers, data specialists, logistic experts and event officials and eventually hope to award one outstanding person the prize of a place in the Ferrari Academy (Asia Pacific).”
The next round of the Motorsport Australia Queensland Circuit Championships will be at Morgan Park on 27 August.