Former Formula 1 test driver Susie Wolff has been named team principal and a shareholder of the Monaco-based Venturi Formula E team.
Wolff, who is the wife of Formula One Mercedes boss Toto Wolff, retired from professional driving in 2015 and will be taking up a management position in a major motorsport team for the first time in her career.
The 35-year-old will have Felipe Massa – a driver she knows well from her time as a Williams F1 test pilot – as one of her charges when the 2018/19 Formula E season gets underway in Saudi Arabia in December.
“I knew that I wanted to continue with the challenge of competitive racing, just not behind the wheel,” said Wolff, who has been a major proponent of the Dare to be Different programme aimed at encouraging women into motorsport.
“You can’t just switch off your competitive instincts when you stop driving and that determination and desire to achieve still burn brightly inside me,” she added in a statement.
Mercedes are set to enter Formula E next season. Venturi will be supplying powertrains to the new HWA team next season, a Mercedes affiliate which has run the manufacturer’s cars in the German Touring Car (DTM) championship.
“This is not linked to Mercedes and Toto,” Wolff told the BBC of her new position.
“I was always very clear when I took some time out to start a family that I wanted to come back and get my teeth into something and of course I could not work for Toto or a competing manufacturer.
“I’ve had a front-row seat as he has led the Mercedes F1 team very successfully and it became clear to me that I wanted to stay within motorsport.”