Amidst addition of Kush Maini as reserve driver, Mahindra Racing also unveils plans to sign commercial partners

Kush Maini's responsibilities will include simulator runs, supporting the team at certain E-Prix events, and perhaps even getting to experience the team's M10Electro race car in the future.

India’s only Formula E Championship participant, Mahindra Racing has roped in an Indian racing driver, Kush Maini, as reserve driver.

After making significant progress through the Fédération Internationale de l’ Automobile (FIA) single-seater pathway over the previous seven years, Maini’s inclusion in the Indian team on the grid will enhance Formula E in India.

Beginning since Italian Formula 4 in 2016, Maini has experienced achievement in British Formula 3, Formula Renault Eurocup, and FIA Formula 3 Championship, and is currently competing in the FIA Formula 2 Championship. Earlier this year, he achieved his first podium in Melbourne, Australia.

Presently, as the protégé of two-time Formula 1 champion Mika Hakkinen, Maini searches for fresh possibilities in his nascent career at the pinnacle of international motorsport. The 23-year-old has decided to establish a new alliance with Mahindra Racing as the team enters a thrilling chapter in its history.

Kush Maini and Frederic Bertrand

Along with Jordan King, Maini will collaborate strongly with the team’s two race drivers, Edoardo Mortara and Nyck de Vries. His responsibilities will include simulator runs, supporting the team at certain E-Prix events, and perhaps even getting to experience the team’s M10Electro race car in the future.

On the development, Kush Maini said, “It’s a huge honour to be joining Mahindra Racing. Being an Indian driver, and the team being Indian, it feels in many ways like coming home. A lot of my work will be concentrated on the simulator, and hopefully getting in the car for the Rookie Test. I’m just going to try and learn as much as I can, it’s a different style of racing.

I’ll be doing as much work as possible on the sim with the engineers to try and be helpful for both Edoardo and Nyck, and to try and help push the team forward on-track. Mahindra is a huge manufacturer, so for me, it’s a massive deal to be signing with them. Being an Indian brand, it’s the cherry on top of the cake. I’m super excited to get started.”

Mahindra Racing’s CEO Frederic Bertrand, said, “We are excited to welcome Kush to Mahindra Racing as a Reserve Driver. He has a great record that speaks for itself in the junior formulae and is an exciting talent to add to our driver lineup. We are a very future-focussed team, so the opportunity to support new and emerging talent, such as Kush, is one we are naturally keen to explore.

We’ve been watching him in FIA Formula 2 this season, and believe he has all the key skills and attributes to help Mahindra Racing push on for greater success in the future. His synergy with Edoardo, Nyck and Jordan will play an important role in the team’s continued push for better performance on-track, and off-track he is a superb ambassador for India within motorsport.”

SportsMint Media received the privilege of having an exclusive interaction with Frederic Bertrand, where he was asked, “Do you think that the addition of Kush Maini to Mahinda Racing, an Indian firm, could attract sponsorship opportunities from local brands?

We would like to have a few of the local sponsors but it’s difficult to convince people in today’s time as the results are not necessarily what the people would like to see. I understand that there is a little bit of pride behind the fact that people want to be associated with a winning project for sure, on top of winning for India. But right now, we are not winning enough, and then people familiar with us might question their stay with the team.

But definitely, we are looking around as long as the people understand what we are doing. If the firms might get in thinking next year, we will be on the podium, then it’s inappropriate because we won’t be on the podium next year. We are very humble and we know where we can go. But that doesn’t mean that we don’t push the boundaries to make sure that we progress; no, we will do that. But we want to do it in an organised, humble way and step by step with something for the long term.

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