De Filippis
F1 ladies (L-R): Amati, de Filippis, Lombardi 


A good initiative!

The FIA has launched a new push for women to become more involved in motorsport.

The very imaginatively named Woman & Motor Sport Committee – they were up all night thinking that one up! – it is headed by former World Rally winner Michele Mouton and held its inaugural meeting on Monday.

In the history of modern-era Formula 1, just five women – Maria Teresa de Filippis, Divina Galica, Lella Lombardi, Desiré Wilson and Giovanna Amati – have attempted to qualify for a Formula 1 Grand Prix. Of those, only Lombardi achieved a championship points finish, picking up half a point at the accident-halted 1975 Spanish Grand Prix.

Amati was the last of the quintet to appear at a Grand Prix in 1992, failing in each of her three attempts to qualify the year-old Brabham BT60Y – indeed, I was in the grandstands at Kyalami watching her circle at not great speed…!

However, the FIA now hopes to encourage greater female participation in F1.

"The FIA’s membership around the world comprises men and women," FIA President Jean Todt said. "Each has an identical part to play in sport.

"Like many international federations, we will support, promote and help advance the participation of women in motorsport to ensure equal opportunities at all levels."

Mouton – a winner herself of four World Championship Rallies – added: "Women already have their place in motorsport, they have proved it.

“But for many years people have asked me why there have been no women following in my footsteps. I really hope the commission can help answer that question and that we can attract and support women in all areas of our sport."

On paper, this looks like an excellent initiative for motorsport in general and F1 in particular! Would you like to see a woman driver in F1?

[Original images via The Cahier Archive]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.