US racing driver and noted environmentalist Leilani Münter has her eye on a racing seat in Formula E. “It is obviously my dream series, the perfect fit for me,” she tells Current E. “I would love to race in Formula E.”
If successful in a bid for seat, she would join Lucas di Grassi and Takuma Sato on the Formula E driver programme, and possibly (although so far unconfirmed by FEH) Ben Collins, a former Top Gear Stig. Ferrari F1 development driver Pedro de la Rosa and ex-F1 racer Bruno Senna are also tipped to find their way into the series.
The diminutive driver – Münter is just 5ft 3 – does indeed seem to be a perfect fit for the sport. For a start, she has established her racing prowess by proving quick in both open wheel and NASCAR racing. She has international appeal, as a US citizen with parents from Hawaii and Germany and married to an engineer from New Zealand. Her media profile is just the sort that FEH is keen to capitalise on – she even writes for The Huffington Post. And she has green credentials that would make even Di Caprio pause, winning numerous accolades for her tireless campaigning across the globe on a broad range of environmental issues. Since 2007, Münter has even taken to adopting an acre of rainforest for every race she enters in an attempt to become a “carbon neutral racing driver”.
It wouldn’t hurt the sport’s image, either, that Münter brings the sort of glamour to racing overalls that wouldn’t be out of place at a Monaco afterparty. Her presence would also go some way to introducing gender balance in Formula E: to date, there are no women in leadership or driver positions – something that seems particularly old-fashioned for a series calling itself the “future of motorsports”.
We can’t think of a better Formula E figurehead.
Image courtesy of Robyn Von Swank Photography.