INDIANAPOLIS (May 30, 2021)—For the first time in the 105-year history of the Indianapolis 500, a team comprised primarily of women has competed in the world’s largest sporting event. It was a dream brought to reality by long-time motorsport executive and team principal Beth Paretta who launched Paretta Autosport just four months ago with the idea of creating a more inclusive space for women in motorsports.
Veteran INDYCAR driver Simona De Silvestro made her sixth trip to the famed Brickyard behind the wheel of the No. 16 Paretta Autosport/Rocket Pro TPO Chevy, completing 170 of 200 laps before brake trouble on pit entry ended the day for the team.
With 135,000 fans in attendance for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic, all eyes were on the Paretta Autosport pit crew as four women—Madison Conrad, Caitlyn Brown, Amanda Frayer, and Mallorie Muller went “over the wall,” a first for INDYCAR, while aero engineer Lauren Sullivan and junior data acquisition engineer Chelsea Pechenino monitored data and on track performance from the pit box. Sara Durant was the team’s tire specialist and Formula W racer Ayla Agren was the Turn 3 spotter. Additionally, all of Paretta’s front office personnel are women, totaling approximately 70% of the team’s staff.
Simona De Silvestro, Driver, No. 16 Paretta Autosport Rocket Pro TPO entry“It was really cool to see everyone at the track, so many fans. It was super special. We went out there and I think we were quite speedy, particularly at the end. Kudos to everyone who put so much work into it. Unfortunately, I ran out of brakes a little bit and I couldn’t really save it there at entry. Maybe I could have done something a little different, but it’s pretty disappointing to end the day like this. The whole month everyone did such a great job, and we’re proud of the effort. It was really good to be back in an IndyCar and I hope for more.
Michael Nelson, Strategist, No. 16 Paretta Autosport Rocket Pro TPO entry “What a big race today. That’s the most people I’ve been around in a long time, so it was exciting to see that, and go through all the great parts that make this such a big race. It was special to be here for this team and to work with Beth and Simona and all the people in this group. They’ve really come a long way since they all got together months ago, and it shaped up into a pretty good team today. We didn’t have the result we wanted. We were behind the eight ball a little bit from qualifying, but the car was a lot better today and we were able to move forward a bit and make some passes. We just didn’t get the opportunity strategy-wise with the way the race played out to try to work our way up to the front; but the car was good, and Simona did a great job. Everyone on the team did a great job, particularly because there’s a couple of people who’ve never pitted a car before. To be under the pressure they had today in one of the biggest races there is and to perform so well says a lot for the group. The sky is the limit with more experience.”
Beth Paretta, Team Owner/CEO, No. 16 Paretta Autosport Rocket Pro TPO entry “The No. 16 Paretta Autosport Rocket Pro TPO Chevy was fast today, well balanced. Simona had a great start to the day and just locked them up there at the end. Some other drivers were caught out with the same issue, but this is racing. We had a terrific first outing. The women on the crew did a great job. The pit stops were pretty smooth. We need a little improvement in some places and there’s some work to do on our consistency, but great job overall. I want to thank everyone at Team Penske for the technical alliance. I can’t wait to be back on the track and with this team.”
Additional races are under consideration by Paretta Autosport, but no announcements have been made at this time.
Carolina Online will be represented on the Paretta Autosport entry in the Indianapolis 500, the world’s largest single-day sporting event.
The partnership pairs two entities that believe in diversity and accessibility for all, both on the racetrack and in higher education.
INDIANAPOLIS, May 26 — Paretta Autosport announced today that Carolina Online, the University of South Carolina’s virtual campus, has entered into a multi-year marketing partnership with the NTT IndyCar Series team as its official university education partner. This partnership starts with the 105th running of the Indianapolis 500 May 30 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Carolina Online, which launched last month, is the University of South Carolina’s system-wide, comprehensive effort to deliver rigorous bachelor degree programs online. With over 30 programs offered through Carolina Online and a single tuition rate for in-state and out-of-state students, the University of South Carolina is ensuring that higher education is accessible for all with this new initiative.
Accessibility for women in a male-dominated sport is a keystone of Paretta Autosport. Its No. 16 Chevrolet, which is driven by Simona De Silvestro, represents a groundbreaking achievement in IndyCar as the first-ever entrant in the Indianapolis 500 from a team that is female owned, female driven and largely female crewed. It is an extension of the IndyCar series’ “Race for Equality and Change” announced last July to broaden equality in the sport.
“Paretta Autosport and Carolina Online both appeal to people, male and female, who believe in diversity and aren’t afraid to create their own path to success,” said Beth Paretta, team principal of Paretta Autosport. “We couldn’t be happier to represent the University of South Carolina’s virtual campus, which strives to make higher education a reality for everyone who is willing to work for it.”
“We are excited to join Paretta Autosport for this year’s Indy 500 and future races,” said Diana Hill Mitchell, the University of South Carolina’s senior associate provost for social innovation and e-learning. “Our missions are aligned as we both believe in championing inclusion and access to opportunity. In Paretta Autosport we have identified an exceptional partner that is putting our shared values into action.
“The higher education learning environment is no longer limited to the campus classroom or lab,” Mitchell continued. “Whether someone is starting their college career for the first time or working to complete a program they started in the past, Carolina Online welcomes students from across the country to access top-tier collegiate courses that fit their family and life circumstances.”
Paretta Autosport has a technical alliance with Team Penske, one of the most successful teams in the history of professional sports with 18 Indianapolis 500 victories.
This is Carolina Online’s first partnership in motorsports, but it is also an official education partner of Major League Soccer.
Carolina Online joins Paretta Autosport’s primary sponsor, Rocket Pro TPO, and MoneyLion on the car’s livery.
For more information on Carolina Online see carolinaonline.sc.edu. For more information on Paretta Autosport see parettaautosport.com.
Paretta Autosport Makes Field for Indy 500 in Dramatic Final Qualifying Effort
INDIANAPOLIS (Saturday, May 23) – Qualifying for the Indianapolis 500 held its reputation for coming down to the wire on “Bump Day” at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The No. 16 Paretta Autosport/Rocket Pro TPO Chevy of Simona De Silvestro was one of five entrants for the 105th annual Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge attempting to grab the final three spots for the grid for the 500-mile May 30th race.
De Silvestro was on “the bubble” in the 33rd position after her four-lap Day Two qualifying run that averaged 228.353. Two of the cars that had slower times opted to make a second qualifying effort, which left Simona waiting patiently in her cockpit while the clock ticked down. Fortunately, neither was able to bump her off the final row for the 33-car grid.
The team’s journey to qualifying for the Indy 500 field started just four months ago when CEO and team owner Beth Paretta announced on January 19th her goal to qualify for this year’s Indy 500 with a female-forward team and message. With a technical alliance with Team Penske and an extension of INDYCAR and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s “Race for Equality & Change” announced last July, the team’s journey has been quick and well documented.
The “Iron Maiden” from Switzerland, De Silvestro has now qualified every one of the six attempts she’s had at Indianapolis, the first being in 2010, when she was the Rookie of the Year. This is Paretta Autosport’s first attempt as the team came to Indy with a lineup of 70% women in both competition and commercial roles. The majority female team promotes STEM education and seeks to be role models for young women everywhere to work hard and follow their dreams.
L-R: Simona De Silvestro, driver, Katie Kiel, INDYCAR Radio Network reporter,Beth Paretta, Team Principal
Simona De Silvestro, Driver, No. 16 Paretta Autosport Rocket Pro TPO entry “What a day! It was definitely nerve racking being in this position. I’m super happy that we made it in the field because of everyone involved, and because of all the hard work that got put in. It would have been crazy to not have made it. From that point of view, we’re super relieved. Now we just focus on racing and I think we could be pretty good because our car was pretty competitive.
“For Beth, I just wish it wouldn’t have been as crazy for the first time we were racing together. At least we got that one out of the way and now we can really focus on this going forward. It was interesting but you know I think we all stuck together, worked hard and that’s what made us strong to be here today.”
Beth Paretta, Team Owner, No. 16 Paretta Autosport Rocket Pro TPO entry “It’s unbelievable. It’s like climbing a mountain and getting to the top and looking around to see how beautiful it is. It’s just amazing and a testament to everybody working hard overnight, digging in and never giving up. That’s what it is. And that’s what got us here and that’s what got us onto the grid today.
What’s the plan the rest of the week leading into Indy? “We will go back to working our pit stops and get the car back into race trim. Honestly, in fairness, if you look at the time sheets from this week, race trim, the car is a lot stronger and Simona’s a lot more comfortable in it. We’re looking forward to getting back into that set up because I think we do a little better. It is tough to pass here with the aeroscreens so we’ll have to see. It is tough to start from the last row, but you can’t do it if you’re not in it so at least we’ve got a shot.”
The 105th Indianapolis 500 will be aired live on NBC from 11:00-4:00 p.m. on May 30th. All times are eastern.
INDIANAPOLIS(Saturday, May 22) – Day one of qualifying for the 105th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge took place today at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The No. 16 Paretta Autosport/Rocket Pro TPO Chevy entry had fans on their feet as Swiss driver Simona De Silvestro attempted to qualify with her mostly female pit crew team preparing the car.
Having drawn the qualifying position of number 33, the popular team knew they had their work cut out for them with the mid-afternoon spot, where temperatures rose 25 degrees from the start of the session. De Silvestro went into qualifying confident after four productive days of testing this week at the 2.5-mile speedway. After four laps, she held the 31st position out of 35 cars attempting to make the 2021 field.
The Paretta Autosport team, who has a technical alliance with Team Penske, returned to the garage to make a few adjustments, knowing they would discard their earlier time and make another attempt to make the Top 30, whose effort to qualify would be solidified today for a berth in the Indy 500, May 30th.
When the times were not as strong as the team hoped, the “Iron Maiden” stayed on pit lane and the team hurried the Rocket Pro TPO Chevy back to the qualifying lane for a third effort as the clock was running out. With just 35 second remaining, Simona was released for a final four-lap qualifying attempt to improve her position while fans in the stands shouted her name and cheered her on. In the end, she did not break the Top 30, with her average time at 228.173 mph, classified in the 32nd position of the 33-car field. Qualifying outside of the Top 30 means the team must make another qualifying attempt tomorrow during last chance qualifying for the final three positions on the grid.
All eyes will be on this brand new female-forward team whose historic attempt to qualify for this year’s Indy 500 is going to run down to the final hours on Sunday’s “Bump Day”.
Tomorrow will feature two highly competitive battles – for the last three starting positions in the field of 33, including Paretta Autosport, and the pole-deciding Fast Nine Shootout to determine the starting order of the first three rows. Practice of nearly three hours with cars running in race setup while driving in groups will also be part of the schedule.
INDYCAR’s Day Two qualifying will be aired on NBCSN/Peacock in the U.S. from 1:00-2:30 p.m. with 2:30-4:30 continued on NBC/Peacock. All times Eastern.
Simona De Silvestro, Driver, No. 16 Paretta Autosport Rocket Pro TPO entry “We just couldn’t find the balance of the car for some reason today. We’re close, but it’s definitely not where we thought we would be when we looked at the practices. We just need to see what’s happening, keep our heads down and try to qualify for tomorrow.
Beth Paretta, Team Owner/CEO, No. 16 Paretta Autosport Rocket Pro TPO entry “The first attempt was planned so therefore your second and third attempts basically cascade from that first decision. It came down to the wire with the clock this afternoon. I will say that I was only nervous about if we were going to be able to get the attempt because once it’s underway there’s nothing I can do, I’m pretty confident for tomorrow. The great thing is it’s a two-day event. We’re going to work overnight. We always have the never give up attitude because that’s what got us here. So it is obviously going to continue because that’s what’s at our core.”
“Michael Nelson, Strategist, No. 16 Paretta Autosport Rocket Pro TPO entry “After the first qualifying attempt, we came back in and made some big changes to the car and got back out in time to make two more runs. We were fighting right on that bubble the whole time to make it in today but were just shy. So, we’ll go back tonight to look at the information and get it ready to go to get it into the show tomorrow.
Regarding having just 35-seconds remaining to make the final qualifying round: “We laughed about it. We put the pressure on Madison Conrad, the starter in the back. If she didn’t hit it right, we wouldn’t have gotten to go out. So she did a really good job to get the car started under an enormous amount of pressure today.”
Rocket Pro TPO and Paretta Autosport Announce Primary Sponsorship of #16 Chevrolet Piloted by Simona De Silvestro in the Indianapolis 500
· First Female INDYCAR Team to Partner on Content Highlighting Women in the Mortgage Industry· Paretta Autosport and Rocket Pro TPO to create ‘Rocket Accelerator’ campaign highlighting female leaders in both racing and mortgage industry
INDIANAPOLIS (April 1, 2021) – Paretta Autosport today announced Rocket Pro TPO, the division of Rocket Mortgage which works exclusively with independent mortgage brokers, will serve as the primary sponsor of the No. 16 Chevrolet in the 105th running of the Indianapolis 500.
Piloted by Simona De Silvestro, the #16 Chevrolet represents a groundbreaking achievement in INDYCAR as the first-ever entrant in the Indianapolis 500 from a team that is female-owned, female driven and largely female crewed. As the primary sponsor, Rocket Pro TPO will be front-and-center with dominant branding on the car, firesuit and crew suits.
“Having Rocket Pro TPO come onboard as our primary sponsor for this year’s Indy 500 is a perfect partnership,” said Beth Paretta, CEO/team principal of Paretta Autosport. “We are both huge proponents of highlighting the power of women, while also using technology and speed to be the best at what we do. I cannot wait for what we will be able to accomplish as a team – both on and off the track.”
Together, Rocket Pro TPO, Paretta and De Silvestro will partner on the ‘Rocket Accelerator’ multimedia campaign. The group will use unique and innovative ways to amplify women in the mortgage lending and racing spaces by showcasing female leaders who are thriving in these industries.
This campaign will be just the start of an ongoing commitment from the organizations to improve access to employment in mortgage and racing, increase the availability of mentorship opportunities and build a strong sense of community within the lender’s broker partner network.
“It is an honor to be able to use the Indianapolis 500 to highlight and amplify the important role that women play in our industry, in our company and in independent mortgage brokers’ offices all across the country,” said Austin Niemiec, Executive Vice President of Rocket Pro TPO. “Rocket Accelerator will be a central focus of our business as we look to expand opportunities and access for female brokers, while also creating educational programs for the next generation to give them the keys to unlocking their full potential with a robust career.”
“We all need to have our pedal to the metal and win in our respective industries. At the same time, this isn’t about crossing the finish line first, it is about lifting up others and helping them get there too,” said Stacey Van Roosendaal, President and CEO of Sundance Lending which is a Rocket Pro TPO broker partner. “Women can play a significant role in driving these industries to a better place. It is important we support and cheer for our professional sisters wherever they work.”
Rocket Pro TPO is a division of Rocket Mortgage, the nation’s largest mortgage lender, and part of publicly traded Rocket Companies (NYSE: RKT). The company supports the independent mortgage broker community, whose clients seek face-to-face service with the touch of localized expertise, by providing them the industry-leading Rocket technology and process that has enabled so many to achieve the American dream of homeownership.
Paretta Autosport’s formal entry into the 2021 Indianapolis 500 was recently accepted. The team is an extension of the INDYCAR series’ “Race for Equality and Change” announced last July to broaden equality in the sport. Paretta Autosport has a technical alliance with Team Penske.
MoneyLion Launches Its “Women Who Roar” Campaign in Partnership with Paretta Autosport Focused on Leveling the Playing Field for Women Across Finance, Science and Technology
Indianapolis, Ind. (March 8, 2021) – Paretta Autosport and MoneyLion announced today that the financial platform, where hardworking Americans can bank, borrow, save and invest – all within one app, will become the first team sponsor of the No. 16 Chevy-powered INDYCAR at this year’s Indianapolis 500. Paretta is the first female owned, female driven, and female forward race team in the sport.
To further the INDYCAR’s “Race for Equality and Change” initiative announced last year, and in honor of International Women’s Day, MoneyLion and Paretta Autosport are also partnering to launch MoneyLion’s “Women Who Roar” campaign to advance financial empowerment, support women’s careers and level the playing field for women across a number of areas in finance, science and technology.
Paretta Autosport will enter the 105th running of the Indianapolis 500-Mile Race presented by Gainbridge on Sunday, May 30, with 2010 Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year Simona De Silvestro behind the wheel.
MoneyLion’s “Women Who Roar” campaign features:
Play Like a Girl Mentorship Program: MoneyLion and Paretta Autosport have committed to creating a unique Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) mentorship program for nonprofit, Play Like a Girl. This program will connect middle and high school girls with female leaders in the fintech and motorsports industries. It will also include a new “Here Women Roar” female executive leadership chapter of the organization focused on mentoring teenage girls about technology through customized fintech challenges. Not only will the partnership offer students career guidance, but it will bring them on-site to see their mentors in action, broadening their horizons on potential future careers. MoneyLion mentors will also participate in Play Like a Girl’s Women’s Leadership Summit on March 19.
“Women Who Roar” LinkedIn Group: Launching on March 16, MoneyLion is creating a space where women in the workforce can have candid conversations about issues such as financial wellness, mentorship and the wage gap.
“Women Who Roar” Conversation Series: MoneyLion is also launching a special conversation series, which includes in-depth interviews with eight influential female leaders, starting with Beth Paretta, CEO and Team Principal of Paretta Autosport, and Simona De Silvestro. The “Women Who Roar” series will air on Cheddar.com beginning on March 16 and explores women trailblazers’ career paths and advice for the next generation of female leaders.
“MoneyLion is committed to providing the financial products, educational resources and mentorship that’s much needed to level the playing field for today’s workforce and future generations of female leaders,” said Samantha Roady, MoneyLion Chief Operating Officer. “Beth Paretta has built an incredible, inspiring team with Simona as the driver. We’re proud to support a female-owned and operated business and to shine a light on inspiring women’s professional achievements through our sponsorship. We look forward to working closely with the team to bring ‘Women Who Roar’ to life.”
After decades of progress, COVID-19 lockdowns have forced many working women to stay home, fundamentally challenging their responsibilities as professionals and primary caregivers. For the first time in modern history, women are losing more jobs and have higher unemployment than men – exacerbating the existing wage gap.
“MoneyLion can contribute to the recovery from this she-cession by standing for ‘Women Who Roar,’” said Roady. “This partnership with Paretta is a first step in that wider campaign.”
“We’re thrilled to align with MoneyLion because of our shared ideals,” said Beth Paretta, CEO/team principal of Paretta Autosport. “MoneyLion’s focus on empowering women through improved financial access and literacy is a direct parallel to our mission of helping women advance their careers. We’re pleased that MoneyLion sees the value of our women-forward racing program and greatly look forward to being a part of their ‘Women Who Roar’ campaign.”
Automotive and motorsport executive Beth Paretta has a long history in leadership roles with some of the most respected automotive and performance brands, including FCA (Fiat Chrysler Automobiles), Aston Martin and Volkswagen Group. She led successful racing programs and earned three national championships during her tenure at FCA. She is also a board member of the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America.
“We welcome the support of finance and technology giants like MoneyLion to help us advance our mission to drive diversity and meaningful change for girls and women,” says Dr. Kimberly Clay, founder & CEO, Play Like a Girl. “Building a diverse pipeline of young women in STEM is a major priority for us. We’re thrilled to partner with MoneyLion and Paretta Autosport to support this work and our community.”
To learn more, please visit www.MoneyLion.com, www.ParettaAutosport.com and www.iplaylikeagirl.org.
About MoneyLion MoneyLion is a mobile banking and financial membership platform that empowers people to take control of their finances. Since its launch in 2013, MoneyLion has engaged with 7.5 million hard-working Americans and has earned its members’ trust by building a full-service digital platform to deliver mobile banking, lending, and investment solutions. From a single app, members can get a 360-degree snapshot of their financial lives and have access to personalized tips and tools to build and improve their credit and achieve everyday savings. MoneyLion is headquartered in New York City, with offices in San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Sioux Falls, and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. MoneyLion has achieved various awards of recognition including the 2020 Forbes FinTech 50, Aite group best digital Wealth Management Multiproduct offering, Finovate Award for Best Digital Bank 2019, Benzinga FinTech Awards winner for Innovation in Personal Finance 2019 and the Webby Awards 2019 People’s Voice Award. For more information, please visit www.moneylion.com or download the app.
About Paretta Autosport Paretta Autosport is a new team competing in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES. With a technical alliance with Team Penske, they will attempt to qualify and compete in the 2021 Indy 500 and beyond. More than racing, Paretta Autosport is an initiative to encourage and mentor young girls and women to pursue careers in STEM-related fields. The team will incorporate women in key roles: mechanics, engineers, marketing, business operations, and more. Created by female automotive and motorsports executive Beth Paretta, the team is part of the INDYCAR series’ “Race for Equality & Change” initiative.
At Paretta Autosport, the competitive spirit drives us. We work hard and always strive for better: for ourselves, for our team, and for others. For more information, go to www.Paretta Autosport.com.
About Play Like a Girl Play Like a Girl!® is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded on the belief that girls provided with the opportunity to play on a team become women with the confidence to stand on their own. We envision a world where the playing field is level and every girl reaches her full potential and are creating programs to leverage the skills girls gain from sport to propel them into competitive, male-dominated careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). We collaborate with schools, corporations and other partner organizations to deliver a coordinated, multi-year program model through which middle school girls experience practical lessons in leadership and engage in hands-on STEM education through the lens of a confidence-building curriculum, while being exposed to inspiring women coaches, mentors and role models. Since its founding in 2004, Play Like a Girl has benefited more than 50,000 girls and women across the world. Learn how you can get involved with this Nashville-based organization at iplaylikeagirl.org, and connect with us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.