32 finalists to battle for Season 2 qualifiers of Toyota Gazoo Racing UAE Motorsport Academy

Final 32 Chosen to Battle it Out in Qualifiers of Toyota Gazoo Racing UAE Motorsport Academy

Dubai, UAE, May 9th, 2024: Following the auditions of over a thousand applicants for Season 2 of the Toyota Gazoo Racing UAE Motorsport Academy, Al-Futtaim Toyota’s pioneering driver development programme created to develop next generation of motorsport talent in the UAE, the final field of 32 participants has now been selected to advance to the Qualifications stage of the programme.

Toyota Gazoo Racing UAE Motorsport Academy

After a highly successful inaugural season boasting intense off-road action watched by millions of viewers on Shahid, the Arab world’s biggest streaming platform, the Toyota Gazoo Racing UAE Motorsport Academy 2024 moves onto the asphalt to deliver more high-octane action, intense competition, and racing thrills for its competitors and online viewers.

This year, the Toyota Gazoo Racing UAE Motorsport Academy has so far seen contestants take to the track at the state-of-the-art Karting Town in Sharjah for a series of kart racing qualifiers, which will now be followed by thrilling Autocross and Time Attack sessions in the blisteringly fast Toyota GR Supra that will demand exceptional driving skill and precision.

Commenting on the initiative, Saad Abdullah, General Manager – Marketing, Toyota for Al-Futtaim Automotive, said: “After several rounds of intense auditions featuring highly competitive on-track action, it was incredibly tough narrowing it down to the finalists for the Qualifications stage of the Toyota Gazoo Racing UAE Motorsport Academy 2024. However, I would like to extend my heartfelt congratulations to the 32 qualifiers who will be progressing in the second season of the Academy. Whatever the outcome of the Qualifications stage, these 32 can be proud to be part of an elite cadre of drivers selected from thousands to be part of this pioneering driver development programme, and walk away with invaluable skills learned from seasoned motorsports professionals who are hosting the trials they will face. The Toyota Gazoo Racing UAE Motorsport Academy was conceptualised to serve as a platform to invest in the local motorsports community by developing skilled drivers, thereby reinforcing Al-Futtaim’s commitment to motorsport excellence in the region. Once again, the Academy further strengthens Toyota’s motorsports credentials and reinforces what the brand has stood for over the years: dependable performance and the ability to push the limits on what machine and man can do together.”

The Academy Programme

The 2024 season of the Toyota Gazoo Racing UAE Motorsport Academy is taking place across four gruelling phases, in which the physical prowess, driving skills, media finesse, and mental acuity of the competitors will be tested, promising not just glory on the track but a lasting impact on the motorsports landscape both in the United Arab Emirates and globally.

Following the Auditions, in which candidates were assessed based on a combination of competitive kart racing and an interview to assess media skills, the final 32 successful candidates have now been shortlisted for the Qualifications stages, which moves from karting trials onto time attack and autocross rounds in Toyota GR Supra. This year’s field of 32 qualifiers includes a split of 23 male and 9 female drivers, with 16 different nationalities represented and ages ranging from 18 to 57 years old.

16 participants will make it to the second round of the Qualification phase, after which eight will progress to the Development phase, and 4 will compete in the Finals for the ultimate battle to be crowned the Toyota Gazoo Racing UAE Ambassador for 2024.

Throughout the Academy’s stages, candidates can expect to be tested on the following:

  • Media: Shine in the media spotlight as they showcase their charisma and passion for racing.
  • Focus, Physical, & Mental Training: Demonstrate commitment and mental fortitude through focused training exercises.
  • Racing: Take to the track to prove their mettle in high stakes racing challenges.

The supporting partners for the Toyota Gazoo Racing UAE Motorsport Academy in 2024 are Al-Futtaim Blue Rewards, Karting Town, Sharjah, the venue host of this year’s event, Dunlop as the supplier of premium tyres providing added performance and safety to the Toyota GR Supras, and CAFU as the fuel partner keeping the Supras fuelled and ready for action. Nutrition partners for the Academy are Fade Fit, whilst hydration for the competitors has been provided by Al Ain Water.

All of the high-octane action will be available to view in the Toyota Gazoo Racing UAE Motorsport Academy 2024 Web Series on Toyota UAE’s YouTube Channel from June 16, 2024. Stay tuned for more details!