Anglia Motorsport Club launches the Better Together Initiative
In support of women in motorsport, Laura Cooledge and Laura Christmas from the Anglia Motorsport Club (AMSC), joined forces to create the Better Together Initiative in order to allow a better environment for women to compete or volunteer in motorsport. The Better Together Initiative has allowed women, in not just Anglia but across the UK, to feel more comfortable and welcome in motorsport, and has received positive feedback from the community. We join both Laura’s in an interview to discuss their Initiative and provide more information on how to get involved.
What inspired you to create the Better Together Initiative?
As only 5% of Motorsport UK Licence holders are female, Laura Cooledge decided to investigate why women are so underrepresented in motorsport.
The study involved more than 150 women from a range of roles and disciplines in motorsport and the key findings included:
- 47% of women have felt uncomfortable whilst competing, volunteering or working within the motorsport environment.
- One in four women have felt excluded from competing, volunteering or working in motorsport because of their gender.
This led to the creation of the Better Together initiative, which aims to knock down barriers and make club motorsport more inclusive and accessible for all.
What has the feedback been like from the motorsport community?
We ran a series of presentation evenings on Zoom, which provided information about Laura Cooledge’s findings, that shared our vision and how we hope to address the issues raised.
Through the presentation evenings, attendees have been able to gain a clear understanding of why we are taking action, and most have been very supportive.
To increase awareness further than the presentation evenings, we launched our social media campaign #WeAreBetterTogether in October, which featured quotes from a range of women involved in motorsport across the UK. The response to our video was amazing and we received so much support towards the initiative and our message that motorsport should be accessible to all. It was at this point that the initiative reached further than the East Anglian region, with motorsport clubs and high-profile competitors across the country and beyond, including Chris Ingram, supporting our message.
What changes have you seen within your clubs and also the sport, because of the Better Together initiative?
Clubs have included the Better Together logo and adopted our Code of Conduct. Club officials and event organisers have contacted our working group to ask for feedback as to how inclusive their events are and what they can do to improve things in the future. Inappropriate comments posted on social media that have been derogatory towards women in motorsport have been removed quickly or reflected upon after the key initiative messages have been shared in response. Awards structures have been reviewed and realigned to reflect a more inclusive approach.
What advice would you give other clubs that are facing the same issues that you have faced?
Our advice would be to embrace equality and diversity, as we need to give club motorsport a future. Our key aims are to raise awareness and educate the motorsport community of the issues and barriers that exist so that they can react appropriately and prevent these from reoccurring in the future. We would advise other clubs to support the Better Together initiative, share our resources and Code of Conduct, so that we can all generate change.
How can other clubs get involved in the Better Together initiative?
Any clubs wishing to get involved in the Better Together initiative would be extremely welcome to do so and can make contact with us via email@example.com to access our materials, ask any questions or for any guidance.