The Thrustmaster “Rockets” program: Promoting gender equality in gaming
For International Women’s Day, we’ve decided to feature members of our Rockets project.
This program, created in November 2020, was founded to give women in the gaming world the same opportunities as men, so that they can shine just as brightly in the limelight. All this is possible by creating exceptional content and being part of the best competitive gaming teams in the world.
It was with this in mind that we created the Thrustmaster “Rockets” program. We provide tailored support, based on the inherent talents of each of our recruits. Our ultimate goal is to have men and women compete side by side, rather than being separated in gender-based competitions.
This is a worldwide program that spans all of Thrustmaster’s product ranges, including sim racing, flight sim and gamepads.
For a closer look at this initiative, let’s meet some of our “Rockets”:
Nerea “DfreezeGIRL” Andrade Marante
“I’ve been playing video games since I was little, but in 2017 I started creating content on social media. My main content is in Rocket League, a game where unfortunately there aren’t as many women as in other games.
I heard my Rocket League teammates talking about Thrustmaster, and really liked their products and the way that they take care of their creators.
When I had the opportunity to join the Rockets program, it was obviously a dream come true for me.
The thing that stands out most with Thrustmaster is that they’re equally proud to support creators like me, with channels that are maybe not quite as big in terms of numbers, but who are working hard every day to put out great content. They really trust us, and give us a chance to promote their products — which isn’t the case with other brands who aren’t interested in working with us, just because our channels aren’t huge.
My main goal is to continue moving forward with Thrustmaster — a brand that has always put its faith in me, and fully supported my channel. I intend to keep on organizing special events with Thrustmaster (which my followers really enjoy), and look forward to continuing to be able to use their products.
I think that the consequences should be more severe for people who insult women in video games just because they’re women. Lots of women end up abandoning the gaming world because of insults and contempt that they’re subject to by other people in games.”
Eliza “ELZ” Indriani
“I’m from Indonesia, and currently live in the United States. I’m the first Indonesian woman to take part in sim racing and, for now, I’m focusing on competing in iRacing.
I’ve been using Thrustmaster products since the very first day I got started in sim racing. I heard people talking about the Thrustmaster Rockets, and was hoping to be able to be part of the team one day. Being part of the Rockets program was a dream of mine that turned into reality. Thrustmaster has given me a lot of support in my career as a gamer and content creator. My social media following and my Twitch channel have grown really quickly, and I wouldn’t be where I am now without Thrustmaster’s support.
Some of my goals are to foster diversity in the gaming industry, take advantage of the learning process, and bring more people into the world of sim racing. My ambition this year is to win another championship in ACC or iRacing. My main dream is to compete in real life.”
Adrienn “VogelAdri” Vogel
“I’m both a rally driver and a race car driver, and have been the best female Hungarian driver of the year five times. I started my career as a driver 10 years ago in circuit racing. I’ve been on many podiums, and was able to win racing against men in the Kia Platinum Cup. I’ve also competed in the Chinese truck racing championship, where I was the best woman in the competition. I switched to rally racing post-Covid, and have been ranked best female Hungarian rally driver of the year three times.
Training is very important to me. I’m happy to be able to stay in top form — even in the winter, when there isn’t an IRL championship — thanks to Thrustmaster’s professional racing products.
In addition to the products, I get lots of support and help from Thrustmaster, which I can use in real life. It’s like a team: they help you find the best formation. We can all make progress together.I’m a real competitor, and always want to do my very best. I’m happy to be able to prove myself competing in esports, and to be able to square off against other competitors who share the same ideas. There will definitely be some great races coming up this season, and I want to encourage other female competitors to take part as well.”
Anaïs “Modiie” Garestier
“I completely stopped taking part in competitive multiplayer online gaming where you need to talk in order to play: in the end I could only play with my friends. When playing alone in pickup games with strangers, the atmosphere became too oppressive for me — people would insult me as soon as they heard my voice and realized that I was a woman. They would really gang up on me, and it was too hard to stay focused and positive to be able to play well.
Instead of confronting the potentially extremely problematic behavior of some of their teammates, the guild members of the MMOs that I was playing preferred to just not play with women at all.
With that in mind, I think it’s imperative to promote diversity in gaming. Men shouldn’t just play amongst themselves and keep up an insurmountable barrier against people who are different than them. Together we should encourage all initiatives that foster better inclusiveness in the world of gaming.”
“Since I was a teenager, I’ve been passionate about everything related to video games and aviation. It’s not easy to get to know your way around planes if you don’t work in that field, so flight simulation was the perfect way for me to be able to combine these two different worlds. Since sharing your passions is a fulfilling and natural thing to do, setting out to conquer the flight sim world on Twitch made perfect sense to me! And look at where I am now: a member of the Thrustmaster Rockets, and an established name in the community.
My very first gamepad was made by Thrustmaster! Nostalgia aside, when I found out that the company had a program to support female content creators, I decided that it was time for me to get on board!
Thrustmaster helps me with funding and with their products, allowing me to grow my channel and facilitating content creation. They provide constant support — with different projects, exposure, personal contact and encouragement.My dream and my goal would be to prove to the world that the passion for aviation brings men and women together, and inspire new female creators to join the community without any worries or hesitation. The Thrustmaster Rockets program is another powerful demonstration that we women are welcome in the sim gaming world.”
Lyubov “LoveFortySix” Ozeretskovskaya
“I’ve been competing since I was nine years old. I started with karting, then switched to open-wheel cars. I won the Kazakhstan championship four times and placed fourth, making it to the podium several times, in the 2015 Formula Masters Series.
When the pandemic hit in 2020, I started streaming and participating in iRacing races. I found a really cool community full of supportive people, and within two months I became a Twitch partner!
This year, I participated in the Le Mans Virtual Series with Graff by ATRS eSports and completed the iRacing Daytona 24 on the P4 with the LMDh car. I’m currently participating in the Porsche eSports Supercup All-Star Series.
When I worked for sim racing companies before becoming a content creator, my favorite equipment was from Thrustmaster. It feels great to represent a brand I truly believe in.
I get the best equipment and I’ve had the opportunity to take part in big esport events. Everyone at Thrustmaster is really wonderful and always eager to lend a hand.With the Rockets program, I want to continue competing in elite sim racing and encourage more girls to pick up this exciting sport!“
Yona “Only” Renier
“I have a lot of goals when it comes to sim racing. One that is close to my heart is being a spokesperson for women. I see us as not just comrades, but as a close-knit family.
I’m thrilled to be working with Thrustmaster. They give me a lot of mental support when I’m doing the trials for my Gran Turismo results. They always keep a close eye on me and lend an ear when I need something. I want to keep living this adventure for as long as possible. My biggest dream is to qualify for the GT World Tour and represent Belgium, becoming the first European woman on the Gran Turismo stage. While being a Thrustmaster ambassador, I also want to qualify for the Gran Turismo 7 Virtual Olympic Series.“
Anastasia “Ana On Air” Lopes
“I am a motorsport content creator, which includes participating in races and practicing sim racing at home.
I joined the Rockets program when I first entered this field because I share their interest in promoting women in a male-dominated environment and I wanted to be a part of this wonderful project.
Thrustmaster helps me by providing products, visibility and general support for projects, whether it be equipment or something else. I also get to represent the brand at various venues and exhibitions to showcase products, etc.
My goals with this program are to keep developing and feminizing motorsports in general, both on the Internet and in real life. I want to be able to help, guide and support women in this field.“
“I am a professional race driver that participates in endurance races and an LGBTQ+ activist.
I had been running simulations for about a year and liked the sense of community I found online, but I noticed a real lack of female representation, which is surprising given the relative accessibility of racing in real life.
It was great to have a well-known esport brand promote us online and in various competitions, as well as provide us with equipment.
While working with the Rockets program, I want to become a better sim racer, work closely with my teammates and encourage more women and girls to participate in the sport.
The brand has helped give me a wider range of opportunities in the racing simulation industry.
We need more brands showcasing female talent in the industry to challenge gender stereotypes, and this initiative aligns with that goal. The same goes for LGBTQ+ representation. As a proud transgender woman, I always want to represent my community in a positive way and encourage others to achieve their goals while being able to live as their authentic selves.“