What a moment: McLaren Racing announces first female driver to join its racing programs

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Emma Gilmour (left) and Tanner Foust
Emma Gilmour (left) and Tanner Foust
McLaren Media

• Emma Gilmour becomes the first female to race for McLaren Racing.

• The joins the Group's Extreme E program and will drive team up with Tanner Foust.

• Gilmour hails from New Zealand, the same country as the team's founder, Bruce McLaren.

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McLaren Racing took a major step in its transformation process on 3 November 2021 by announcing the first female racing driver to partake in one of its racing programs. Emma Gilmour, a New Zealand native, joins the Group and will compete for the McLaren Extreme E team in 2022.

It is the first time that McLaren will be participating in this unique sport.

Gilmour is no stranger to racing. Having garnered experience in rallying, rallycross, cross-country rallying, and having competed in the inaugural Extreme E season, she knows her way around a racing car and has the accolades to prove it. In 2016, she won the New Zealand Rally Championship - the first and only female ever to do so - and the FIA Women in Motorsport and Qatar Motor and Motorcycle Federation (QMMF) cross-country rally selection in 2015.

Gilmour joins Tanner Foust as the team's drivers for the 2022 Extreme E season.

Team comments

Making the announcement even more special is that Gilmour and the team's founder, Bruce McLaren, are compatriots. McLaren is a racing legend, engineer, and innovator, but has garnered widespread success as a Formula 1 driver turned F1 team owner.

Zak Brown, McLaren Racing's CEO, said: "Emma completes our exciting and competitive driver line-up alongside Tanner Foust for our first season of Extreme E. She's a race winner and has proven herself this year in Extreme E alongside a vast background in competitive off-roading in multiple racing series across the globe. It's fitting that our first female driver originates from New Zealand, where our founder Bruce McLaren was from."

Emma Gilmour, McLaren Extreme E driver: "I'm incredibly honoured to be McLaren Racing's first female driver. Growing up in New Zealand, Bruce McLaren and McLaren Racing are seen as the pinnacles of motorsport. To be competing in Extreme E next year with McLaren is a special opportunity. I'm looking to draw on my previous experience in Extreme E alongside all my skills across rally, rallycross and cross-country rallying, which make me well-suited to the sport, to make a positive impact, and inspire the next generation of female drivers and engineers. I can't wait to get started with the team."

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