FIA Institute Academy


The FIA Institute Young Driver Excellence Academy is a groundbreaking project to develop young driver talent worldwide.

The Academy, now entering its second year after a hugely successful introduction in 2011, provides opportunities for upcoming drivers to develop the skills they need to progress their motor sport careers and to do so with a focus on safety.

It also generates a public benefit by instilling in young drivers an understanding of the highest standards of road safety. As part of the course, participants will gain the necessary skills to become qualified road safety instructors, enabling them to educate the public.

The participation and support of the FIA's National Sporting Associations (ASNs) is helping to ensure that the world's most talented young drivers have access to this initiative.

Eighteen race and rally drivers will be selected by the Academy for its second intake, with at least three drivers chosen from each of the following five regions: North, Central and South America; Western and Northern Europe; Central and Eastern Europe; Middle East and Africa; and Asia and Oceania.

The FIA Institute has teamed up with two motor sport stars to lead the Academy training programme: Alex Wurz, former Formula One driver and two-time Le Mans winner; and Robert Reid, 2001 World Rally Champion.

Academy activities will take place in Europe and further afield, with the intention of making it a truly global driver-training programme.
 
OBJECTIVES
 
The primary goals of the Academy are:
   
- to increase skills in the area of driver and road safety;
 
- to actively promote the principles of safety, fairness and responsibility both on and off the track; and
 
- to prepare young drivers to compete at the pinnacle of the sport.
 
The Academy programme is fully funded by the FIA Foundation, and managed by the FIA Institute, as part of the Motor Sport Safety Development Fund's Young Driver Safety Programme.
 
CURRICULUM
 
The full curriculum includes the following areas:
 
- Road Safety Trainer certification
- Physiology
- Sports Psychology
- Nutrition and Hydration
- Driving skills: theoretical and practical understanding of vehicle dynamics
- Sponsorship and Commerce in Motor Sport
- Communication and Media
- Team Performance and Dynamics
- Interpersonal Skills
- Career Management
- Marketing
- Logistics and Planning

It is delivered in six separate workshops, each between three and five days long. They will take place over a nine-month period at different locations in Europe and further afield.

Workshop 1: Learning the basics

Introduction to core topics including: physiology, sports psychology, nutrition and hydration, sponsorship, and presentation skills. This workshop will take place in Edinburgh, Scotland from 13-16 December 2011.

Workshop 2: Team building and personal goal setting

Highly interactive workshop conducted in the French Alps, focusing on team building and personal development, team performance and dynamics. This workshop will take place in Chamonix, France from 05-11 January 2012.

Workshop 3: Learning into Practice – Advanced Skills learning

Development of advanced skills in relation to the topics covered in the first workshop, including a review of individual performance.

Workshop 4: Continuous Improvement – Advanced Skills learning

Development of road-safety and driving skills, with a mix of practical on-track and theoretical activities, in addition to further development of advanced skills relating to topics from previous workshops.

Workshop 5: Trainer education

Highly interactive workshop with a mix of practical on-track and theoretical activities focused on advanced driver training.

Workshop 6: Trainer education

Participants undertake a formal qualification to become certified road-safety instructors.

Dates for workshops 3-6 will be finalised according to the competition and testing schedule of the final 18 participants.

Alex Wurz and his company Test & Training International (TTI) are responsible for the driver training aspect of the curriculum. This includes the development of technical skills, safety training, attitudes and awareness.

Robert Reid and his company Elite Sports Performance (ESP) handle the human performance aspect of the curriculum. This includes physiology, psychology, nutrition, media skills and career management.

Both Wurz and Reid are also coaching drivers on a one-to-one basis throughout the season.

SELECTION CRITERIA
 
(1) The Applicant must be between 17 and 23 years old on October 1, 2011.
   
(2) The Applicant's long-term goal must be to compete at the pinnacle of international competition.
   
(3) The Applicant must have consistently achieved outstanding results.
   
(4) The Applicant must:
   
  a) be in at least their first year of circuit (car) racing in 2011, but must not have completed more than four years of competition (including the 2011 season) – note that this should not include participation in Formula One, IndyCar or GP2*; or
  b) be in at least their second year of rallying in 2011, but must not have completed more than five years of competition (including the 2011 season) – note that this should not include participation in the World Rally Championship in a World Rally Car.
   
(5) The Applicant must confirm that they intend to compete in a regional or international series in 2012.
   
(6) The Applicant must currently hold a valid competition licence issued by their ASN.
   
(7) The Applicant must confirm that they have the ability to source their required funding for competing, for the period of their participation in the Academy.
   
(8) The Applicant must demonstrate adequate ability in spoken and written English language (their first language need not be English).
   
(9) The Applicant must confirm that they can attend the selection event, which will take place in Austria from 15-18 November 2011.
   
(10) The Applicant must confirm that they are able to pay for their travel and subsistence when attending the selection event, which will take place in Austria from 15-18 November 2011.
   
(11) The Applicant must be able to demonstrate above-average levels of personal fitness.
   
(12) The Applicant must confirm that they undertake to make all reasonable efforts to attend all of the activities associated with participating in the Academy during 2011 and 2012 (including workshops and other coaching sessions).
   
(13) The Applicant must confirm that they are able to pay for their travel and accommodation when attending the academy activities during 2011 and 2012 – subsistence costs including meals will be funded directly by the FIA Foundation.
   
(14) The Applicant must confirm that they are prepared to display Academy logos on their competition apparel and competition vehicle.
   
(15) The Applicant must confirm that they are prepared to become an ambassador for the FIA Institute throughout their motor sport career.
   
(16) The Applicant must confirm that they agree to sign a contract with the FIA Institute outlining their responsibilities whilst at the Academy and whilst performing their role as an ambassador.
   
* Karting experience should not be included