Thank you for the article about Desire Wilson — it was long overdue. I agree with her and Bernie Ecclestone that women cannot progress in the sport until attitudes at higher levels begin to change. They will change, though: look at Thee Day Eventing. In the ’50s there were virtually no women riders, but it now has more women than men!
When I drive my 500bhp Shadow DN9B, I don’t need excessive “upper body strength”. You aren’t fighting the car all the way; it is an enjoyable, balance between power, driver and track. You need to be very physically fit to sustain levels of aerobic stamina in order to be relaxed and concentrated. G-force too, is a ratio of my body weight, not a man’s; yes I have ended up with a slightly thicker neck but I’ve been racing for 20 years. But progress is being made: the racing establishment in the form of the MSA, the MIA and now the BRDC want to bring women into that exclusive networking environment from which we have previously been excluded. We will have a female driver in Formula One within the next ten years, probably more than one… there’s a mission statement for you!
I AM, YOURS, ETC
Helen Bashford, Chairman BWRDC, via E-mail