Incredible Women In Motorsport: #WomenInMotorsportMonth
As it's officially #WomenInMotorsportMonth it's only right that we celebrate some of the amazing women that are a part of this fast-paced industry.
Motorsport is an industry that I am beyond thrilled to be a part of, even in my own little way, as it's a huge part of my life. It never fails to amaze me the determined and intelligent women I have met through motorsport and will continue to meet. It's truly an honour to share a passion with so many bada** women!
However, motorsport is clearly a male-dominated industry, women are up against decades worth of institutionalised sexism. Even though many of the men in motorsport now agree that it isn't just an industry for men, misogyny does still exist and we need to take the necessary steps to eradicate it.
Therefore, during the month of November, we're celebrating the wonderful women in motorsport. From drivers to fans, let's give ourselves a moment to shine and proudly show our accomplishments. Let us speak up for ourselves and times we have experienced misogyny.
To inspire you further, let's take a look at some of the incredible women in the motorsport industry.
Maria Teresa De Filipis
Italian racing driver Maria Teresa De Filipis was the first ever woman to compete in Formula One. Maria competed with Maserati in seasons '58 and '59 with her highest finish being P10 at the 1958 Belgian GP.
Though her time in F1 was brief, De Filipis is considered a pioneer of the sport and her legacy will truly live on forever.
In 1977, Janet Guthrie was the first ever woman to compete in the Indianapolis 500 and the Daytona 500 . She went on to become the first woman to lead a lap in NASCAR.
Previously, Guthrie had attempted to qualify for the 1976 Indy 500 race but was unsuccessful. Later in her career, it was revealed to her by the other male drivers that this was due to her gender.
Danica Patrick is the most successful woman in Indy car history, having came first at the 2008 Indy Japan 300 - the only win by a woman in IndyCar Series history. Patrick also has the most starts, laps-led and top ten finishes of any other woman in NASCAR.
Despite having left the track in 2018, Danica can still be found working in the industry as a network TV analyst.
Brittany, Courtney and Ashley Force
These sisters are the daughters of the driver with the most wins in NHRA (National Hot Rod Association) history - John Force. Clearly, a last name is not all they share, they have the family winning history. With Brittany, in 2017, becoming the second woman in history to win a Top Fuel Championship
Ashley became the fist woman to win in Top Fuel and Funny Cars in 2008. Courtney is also the only woman to qualify and finish first at the Funny Car Winternationals.
British racing driver Jamie Chadwick is a two-time W series champion and the development driver for Williams Formula One racing team.
Chadwick has competed in racing since she was 11-years-old, where she began go-karting. She is one of the many modern-day female inspirations in the motorsport industry.
Leena Gade is a race engineer, having worked in the FIA World Endurance Championship and the Indycar race series. She was the first female engineer to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans - the world's oldest endurance racing event.
Interestingly, Gade also won TopGear's "Man of the Year" award.
Claire Williams is the daughter of Williams Formula One racing team creator - Frank Williams. She became the Deputy Team Principal of the F1 team in 2013, later resigning in 2020.
For her services in Formula One, Claire was awarded OBE in 2016. - wow!
Suzanna Wolff is a British former racing driver and wife of Mercedes Team Principal, Toto Wolff.
Susie was born in Oban, Scotland and worked her way through the motorsport industry, starting in karting then proceeding to Formula Renault and Formula Three.
She made history in at the 2014 Silverstone GP as a development driver, becoming the first woman to take part in a Formula One race weekend since 1992.
Thankfully, there are slowly becoming more initiatives to get women into motorsports and provide a platform for them to succeed. Let's actively work together to make this industry a safer and even more welcoming place.