2016, a significant year in the Winfield Racing School history. The greatest motorsport champions nursery reborn to sharing its burning passion for motorsport.
Why relaunch the Winfield brand?
In 2012, an idea grows up in Frederic Garcia mind, President of Winfield Group. At the head of the Marketing and Communication department of Lotus F1 Team, he wants to relaunch the Winfield brand with two main ideas: to continue the historical mission of Winfield Racing School, helping drivers to progress in their career, but also sharing motorsport passion with as many people as possible. With 15 years of experience in Formula 1, he decided to join forces with Anne-Charlotte Remy, an expert in sports events organization (in particular in Formula 1), to form an extremely complementary duo.
Frédéric Garcia says: “As Volant Elf-Winfield former pupil, the racing school left a mark, even shaping my professional life in a certain way. It’s sad that this well-known motorsport name was disappearing. That’s why I bought the rights and relaunch the brand in 2016.”
Why choose the Circuit Paul Ricard for the brand relaunching?
Circuit Paul Ricard is the second historic racetrack of Winfield Racing School after Magny-Cours. A 50-year great love story, and an emblematic place for the racing school.
In the racetrack heart, located in the building formerly occupied by Renault Sport in the 1980s and by Toyota Formula 1 department thereafter, Winfield Racing School take advantage of a unique position. With a direct track access (the same that Ayrton Senna used for 1994 Winter Testing: https://youtu.be/PbMSTXkvc1g?t=120) and its high-end facilities, Winfield location is perfect for private testing or motorsport-themed cocktail parties as well. Circuit Paul Ricard is a place steeped in racing history, as Winfield’s prestigious past.
Circuit Paul Ricard is also the state-of-the-art track in Europe. The perfect place to learn how to drive in complete safety thanks to innovative infrastructures such as: run-off, medical center, video control room, etc.
Let’s not forget the Provencal sunshine, which allows customers to enjoy optimal driving conditions during most of the year. Finally, an easy access to the circuit thanks to the Castellet Airport and Marseille train station allow drivers and car enthusiasts to access the French motorsport temple without any difficulty.
All these advantages make the Circuit Paul Ricard the ideal place and make the difference between Winfield from other racing schools.
Is the 21st century Winfield Racing School the same one that was founded in 1964?
Frédéric Garcia says: “We are, of course, proud and respectful of the brand’s glorious past, but we want now to be a racing school totally focused on the future. We don’t want to rewrite the Winfield Racing School history, but to continue it by modernizing the vision and approach. The motorsport world has changed a lot over the years. We have to be creative to satisfy current needs.”
Anne-Charlotte Remy, General Manager of Winfield Racing School, says: “Today, we like to think that Winfield Racing School is a 360° racing school, both in terms of the diversity of the public and activities offered. From the young kartman aiming to perform in competition, to the car enthusiasts of any age wishing to realize their dream of driving a F1, everyone comes to the racing school looking for our expertise and sharing this common passion for motorsport. We cover all aspects of today’s motorsports: race driving of course, but also physical and mental preparation, media training for the drivers, management…”
Winfield Racing School has several activities:
– Exclusive and unique driving experiences, in partnership with Alpine F1 Team;
– Coaching programs for young drivers, focused on performance seeking;
– High-end events and receptions for companies, focused on motorsport world.
The combination of these three main activities allows the racing school to answer the craziest demands!
What are the Winfield Racing School values?
Key words are: Emotion ; Engagement ; Exclusive ; Experience
It’s an extraordinary feeling to allow people with no track experience to immerse themselves in single-seater world at the highest standards. People never watch a Grand Prix in the same way after this unique experience. Sharing the passion for motorsport and Winfield experience is the lifeblood of the racing school.
Mark Twain sums up Winfield Racing School values very well, long before the concept of “motorsport” existed: “They didn’t know it was impossible, so they did it.”
Winfield Racing School also supports future female talent. The aim is to create concrete opportunities for women who want to become professional drivers, such as Doriane Pin, 2019 Volant Winfield driver, who now competes in Le Mans Cup in the Iron Dames Team.
The Girls On Track – Rising Stars 2020 program, organised by the “Women in Motorsport” Commission of the FIA, perfectly matches with racing school’s values. This innovative project, which highlights 20 young female drivers from all over the world, was an incredible opportunity to use all Winfield’s historic know-how to select and train the female talents of tomorrow.
Anne-Charlotte Remy says: “As a woman in motorsport, the fact that Winfield was chosen by the FIA to provide our expertise in organizing this selection was an honor. In a year as particular as 2020, this program provided the whole Winfield team with unforgettable moments and incredible adrenaline shots. Winfield Racing School has been extremely proud to be part of the FIA Girls On Track – Rising Stars adventure. All the Winfield staff have given its outmost in this program, providing the best environment to showcase the 20 rising star’s talent.”
Who is behind the Winfield Racing School 2.0?
Winfield is a big family. With more than 45 fully dedicated staff present during Driving Experience days, Winfield covers all motorsport professions at the highest level, from the mechanic to the team manager, including the mental trainer and physiotherapist, without forgetting the driving coaches. Most of them come from the motorsport world, especially Formula 1. Each Winfield Racing School professional is an expert in his field and brings a real guarantee of quality in terms of knowledge to participants.
Fuelled by this common passion for motorsport, each member is fully invested to listen and accompany the participants in their progressions throughout these unique days by sharing their knowledge.
What is the future of the brand?
Today, race drivers and motorsport enthusiasts come from all over the world at Circuit Paul Ricard to make their dreams come true thanks to Winfield driving experience programs. Tomorrow, Winfield Racing School ambition is to go and meet them all around the world to share his know-how and discover new talents. Tomorrow’s Winfield will be even more international than it is today, with the ambition of 3 new sites spread over the American continent, the Middle East and Asia.
The desire to develop a Winfield racing team is also part of the racing school’s plans. Similar to the first one created in 1985 (managed by Gérard Camili, 1971 Volant Elf finalist), this racing team will allow Winfield driver to be managed longer in their career and help them to take opportunities to reach the top of motorsport category: Formula 1
Focused on the future, Winfield’s plans and ideas are not missing! To be continued…
Photo Credit: © Morgan Mathurin / Thomas Fenêtre