So a few years ago I wrote about the women of F1, and following the simply moronic and outdated comments from Bernie Ecclestone, I felt I needed to add more.
We’ll start with Bernie’s quote “I don’t know whether a woman would physically be able to drive an F1 car quickly, and they wouldn’t be taken seriously”. Now the second part of that is probably true, why? Because of people like Bernie Ecclestone and quotes like this, they do nothing to help anything and only encourage those with similar outdated views.
And they won’t be able to physically drive the car quickly? That’s just not correct, for a start two women have raced in F1, one of which has scored points, three more have entered a race but failed to qualify (Bernie himself failed to qualify for a race) and two have fairly recently been test drivers. Lella Lombardi is the most successful woman in F1, scoring half a point at the 1975 Spanish GP. Susie Wolff competed in four free practice sessions for Williams, in her first full session at the 2014 German GP she was just two tenths off Felipe Massa, clearly women don’t have the pace.
In the US Danica Patrick scored seven podiums, three poles and one win in IndyCar, in a car that does not have power steering like F1 does. Alice Powell was the first female GP3 points scorer in 2012 and has won multiple races in various lower formulae in the past few years. Simona de Silvestro became the first woman to score points in Formula E just a few weeks ago.
Beitske Visser has raced in Formula V8 3.5 for the past few years and scored a handful of points. Tatiana Calderón scored a decent amount of points in F3 in 2014 and moves to GP3 for 2016. Sophia Flörsch is a 15 year old German racer in ADAC F4 with two points finishes in the first three races already.
Anyone that says women can’t race is simply wrong, they can, have, and will continue to do so.