McLaren Racing and Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. (NYSE: ICE) team up as ICE was announced an Official Partner of the McLaren MX Extreme E Team. To debut their brand-new partnership, McLaren officials took part in a news conference at the Exchange, and the Number 58 McLaren Extreme E race car sat outside while the professionals talked all things McLaren x ICE.
360 Magazine’s very own Vaughn Lowery attended the conference and had the opportunity to speak with McLaren Racing Senior Principal Race Engineer Leena Gade and McLaren EX Extreme E Driver Tanner Foust. Listen to the official 360 Mag Podcast episode HERE.
Leena raved about the importance of McLaren and ICE sharing beliefs regarding approaching work in a green way while also encouraging diversification in the workplace. Working in the spaces of engineering and racing that are conventionally white male dominated, Leena stressed the importance of representation within the field.
As a daughter of immigrant parents, Leena’s family moved to the UK from India to build a new life for Leena and her sister. Driven to build a successful life full of opportunities for their children, Leena’s parents story resembles that of one that a surplus of Indian families goes through. Leena emphasized this, while placing emphasis on how they encouraged hard work and dedication to achieve their ambitions.
“Anyone can do this,” she stated, and continued about how it’s important for everyone to have someone to look up to that looks like them. She remembered as a child how all the racers she looked up to were white men, creating conversations about range in the field. These factors are exactly why the partnership between McLaren and ICE is one that she got behind.
Preserving the Earth, too, is another associated value that the two corporations believe in. Leena spoke on how its vital that McLaren aligned themselves with another entity that took climate issues as seriously as they did. It’s vital that our society considers the significance of the modern climate, and that there’s no reason for the crisis to become so intense.
Vaughn also had the chance to sit down with Tanner Foust, one of McLaren’s EX Extreme E Drivers. They chatted about how Tanner delved into the field of racing from starting out as a bio major, how Extreme E driving differentiates from the norm of racing and the continuing inclusivity of McLaren.
With a 25-year career as a racer, it might shock you that Tanner had early dreams of becoming a doctor. Attending University of Colorado majoring in biology, Tanner was always interested in racing, but didn’t quite know how to get his start in the field. Taking on a job with an inventor that made amusement park rides, he found inspiration in his boss that went after his aspirations and lived life each day not feeling like he was “working.”
Deciding to get a job as a mechanic for a local Colorado racing team, Tanner found his start into the world of racing. He then worked his way up and learned how to turn this passion into a profitable job. This has to be his number one piece of advice for anyone aspiring to dive into their dream career; obtain a job that is close to the one that you want, and slowly work your way to that goal.
When asked the question of what his biggest accomplishment with racing had to be, Tanner recalled the first time that he was able to make a livable income from racing. Turning this passion into a fully fledged career was a massive achievement for Tanner, and he aims to give younger people guidance to also become a professional driver.
Now fully immersed in the field of racing, Tanner finds McLaren racing to be unlike any racing he’d previously taken part in. Extreme E approaches racing in a different light with fast sprints and difficult racing terrains. He accredits McLaren to challenging what he thought he was previously capable of and opening him up to a brand-new realm of racing.
Like Leena, Tanner spoke to the great advancements that McLaren has been making towards a more sustainable and inclusive approach. Motorsport is evolving to become more gender and carbon neutral, which is something that Tanner advocates for fully. The extraordinary team working behind the scenes day in and out continues to advance the space of motorsport.
Written by: McKinley Franklin