03. April 2024


Dartford, Wednesday, 3 April 2024.  Exciting news from our Brand-New HQ, this week we are set to launch our first-ever ever video series. Our new series ‘The Academy Racer’ gives viewers an unfiltered look into the UK’s leading amateur racing championship – the Caterham Academy.

‘The Academy Racer’, a six-part video series in partnership with Dutch Barn Orchard Vodka, will be told through the lens of Caterham alumni, Samantha Parker, and will document everything from her pre-season preparation and driver training, through to her first time on the grid.

Parker, who has worked with the brand for 20 years, has also been appointed the Academy Media partner for 2024, aiming to pave the way for others, particularly women, who also share a similar passion for motorsport and a desire to become a racing driver.

Parker said: “Being part of the Caterham Academy this year as a racer, while doing my motorsport presenting will be a challenge, but it’s one that I am more than ready to take on, and I know I’ll have the support of the Caterham team along the way.

“We have racers who are of all ages and backgrounds competing this year, and it’s inspiring to be able to go on this journey with them this season.”

Simon Lambert, Chief Motorsport and Technical Officer added: “The statistics don’t lie; last year a report found female participation currently represents, on average, about 10% across all categories of competition1.

“A lack of female role models is often seen as a barrier for participation in the sport. ‘The Academy Racer’ video series won’t simply solve these barriers, but our hope is by documenting Sam’s journey this season we can showcase the fun, friendly, inclusive, and supportive atmosphere anyone can enjoy by entering the Caterham Academy.”

“Sam has been a role model for this brand for 20 years, so we are excited to finally have her compete in a season and continue to drive excitement for audiences as our presenter.”

The Caterham Academy is a unique series exclusively for novice drivers. Established in 1995, its aim is to enable anyone to realise their dream of becoming of a becoming racing driver. Today, over 1,300 drivers have competed in the series.

Parker’s Caterham Academy car is backed by Dutch Barn Orchard Vodka, with an emphasis on increasing diversity in motorsport. Chris Fraser, Founder and Chairman of Ellers Farm Distillery, has a long-standing history with Caterham.

Fraser said: “Caterham racing is some of the most competitive and fun motorsport in the world.  As an affordable and equal playing field, it enables anyone to strap in and have an awesome experience, racing hard and laughing even harder in the paddock after the races. 

“I am really pleased that Dutch Barn Orchard Vodka is sponsoring Sam to get her racing career started and to raise awareness of the opportunity that Caterham racing represents for women wanting to get involved in motorsport in a fun, supportive and inclusive environment.”

The distinct ‘Dutch Barn’ shade of blue will feature on Parker’s car livery in the 2024 season. 

All six episodes of ‘The Academy Racer’ will be released throughout the year and episode one is available to watch now on ‘The Academy Racer’ dedicated homepage.

To find out more about the Caterham Academy, and secure your spot for 2025, please visit the website.

2024 Academy Calendar

Date Circuit
6 April Curborough Sprint
18 May Croft
15 June Silverstone GP
13 July Cadwell Park
3 – 4 August Knockhill (Super header) Racing in both directions
31 August Brands Hatch Indy
19 – 20 October Donington Park National (Caterham Racing Festival)

1 Inside Track: Exploring the gender gap in motorsport