Guest blog by Thiemo Albers-Daly
Up and coming Scottish racing driver Isla Mackenzie has been signed by IMC Motorsport for 2022 and beyond. Isla has a history of motorsport, having worked for Williams F1 in the past before moving to her current role as a Test Technician at Mercedes AMG High Performance Powertrains. She also competed in the 2021/22 Formula Woman Competition where she made it to the final fifty out of a starting number of over eight hundred.
Isla and IMC Motorsport will partner for a karting campaign this year in the Senior Rotax with the plan to progress onto the KZ2 shifter karts after that.
“I have some exciting things lined up with IMC Motorsport and I feel incredibly lucky – this is just the start for me.” – Isla Mackenzie
2021 Formula 1 World Champion Max Verstappen competed in shifter karts before he made the jump to cars so it’s the perfect way for Isla to learn all that she need to know before making the inevitable switch.
“Her desire to improve, to learn and her ability to absorb and implement changes which is a skill that often takes drivers years to master.” – Alex Scott, IMC Motorsport’s Human Performance Coach & Driver Management
Isla’s Dad owned a farm when she was growing up so she’d often be driving around on quadbikes or whatever else she could get her hands on. Not thinking she’d be able to forge a career in motorsport initially, Isla was pleasantly surprised to discover that she could study Motorsport Engineering at University and the rest as they say, is history.
Jono Halliday, IMC Motorsport Team Owner is very much looking forward to working with Isla, having been blown away by her natural skill behind the wheel.
“We are really excited to announce an official partnership with Isla Mackenzie. After meeting her a few times recently running her for a test day in one of our rotax senior go karts, we were extremely impressed with her natural on track ability.
Aside from this her attitude, ability to absorb, interpret and implement feedback given to her all leading to improved lap times really stood out. It’s quite clear to us there is some serious talent there, which is why we haven’t hesitated to sign her up so early on.
IMC motorsport is a fairly new team, but we aren’t new to motorsport. Combined our key members have over 70 years of experience in motorsport on the world stage from driving, engineering, mechanicing and human performance coaching. We have worked at all levels from karting, GT racing, junior formula cars right through to Le Mans, Indy Car and Formula 1.
We feel combining our experience with Isla’s drive, attitude and natural talent can provide her with a bright future and help launch her to be a future star in motorsport.
We are currently putting together a karting program for Isla to help develop her as a driver and unlock the full potential of her talent. This year she will be out on track testing and racing both our rotax max evo karts and the faster KZ2 shifter kart. Beyond that we will put together a clear roadmap and structure to progress Isla into racing cars that align with her goals and ambition, while helping her to secure the necessary sponsorship to do so and provide the guidance to help mould her into the complete professional driver.”
It’s gone from nought to sixty for Isla incredibly quicky over the last year and it’s going to be very exciting to watch her progress over 2022 and beyond. Whilst it may not all have gone to the original plan at times, Isla is still very firmly making strides in the world of motorsport and is embracing the challenges and the changes head on.
“Although my Formula Woman journey has now ended, from my hard work on that journey over the last ten months, I’ve met some friends for life and it meant that I found IMC Motorsport – so I feel like a winner regardless.”
I’m calling it now, we’re going to see Isla Mackenzie in W Series sometime in the next few years – and there’s going to be a nice little Scottish flag on the side of the car too.