If you love cars and women, this is the article for you. Female drivers are few and far between in this male-dominated industry, but there is still an elite list of women who have made their mark in the world of racing. Female race car drivers can be classified in different ways. They can be classed based on the vehicle they drive or the competition they participate in. The sports that female race car drivers compete in are often based on the male version. A female driver who races on a track with a men’s racing series can be a “men’s” race car driver.
Female drivers have an exciting way of making their mark in the world of racing. They can either follow men and start up an all-female racing team or use their name as part of a team with other women racers. In any case, female race car drivers have had a tough road to follow men. This is because they have traditionally been underestimated in the male-dominated racing industry. Female race car drivers are becoming more accepted, and many people believe that their presence will increase with time. The number of female race car drivers is relatively tiny, but they increase every year.
Table of Contents
- 1. Danica Patrick
- 2. Milka Duno
- 3. Simona de Silvestro
- 4. Cyndie Allemann
- 5. Ashley Force Hood
- 6. Michèle Mouton
- 7. Maryeve Dufault
- 8. Sarah Fisher
- 9. Sabine Schmitz
- 10. Susie Wolff
- 11. Rahel Frey
- 12. Ana Beatriz
- 13. Shannon McIntosh
- 14. Leilani Munter
- 15. Pippa Mann
- 16. Courtney Force
- 17. Natacha Gachnang
- 18. Carmen Jordá
- 19. María de Villota
- 20. Inessa Tushkanova
- 21. Mikaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky
- 22. Johanna Long
- 23. Vicky Piria
- 24. Brittany Force
- 25. Hailie Deegan
- 26. Jennifer Jo Cobb
- 27. Erica Enders
- 28. Deborah Renshaw
- 29. Caitlin Shaw
- 30. Melanie Troxel
- 31. Shea Holbrook
- 32. Alli Owens
- 33. Katherine Legge
- 34. Shawna Robinson
- 35. Vanina Ickx
- 36. Tatiana Calderón
- 37. Christina Nielsen
- 38. Sophia Flörsch
- 39. Vivien Keszthelyi
- 40. Gosia Rdest
1. Danica Patrick
Danica Sue Patrick is a former professional racer from the United States born on March 25, 1982. She is the most successful female driver in the history of American open-wheel racing, having won the 2008 Indy Japan 300, the sole female victory in an IndyCar Series race.
Patrick was born into a working-class family in Beloit, Wisconsin, and began sailing at ten. In the mid-1990s, he won the World Karting Association Grand National Championship three times. With her parents’ consent, she dropped out of high school in 1998 and traveled to the United Kingdom to advance her profession. Patrick raced in Formula Vauxhall and Formula Ford before relocating to the United States in 2001 owing to financial constraints. She raced for Rahal Letterman Racing in five Barber Dodge Pro Series events in 2002. Patrick then spent the next two years racing in the Toyota Atlantic Series. Her best finish was third in the championship standings for the 2004 season, when she became the series’ first female pole sitter.
2. Milka Duno
Milka Duno is a Venezuelan racing driver who has competed in the IndyCar and ARCA racing series. She was born on April 22, 1972. She is well recognized for being the female racer with the highest finish in the 24 Hours of Daytona. In 2014, she joined the NASCAR Nationwide Series.
Duno was a model. Thus he drew a lot of attention. Because of her early start, her racing career was unusual. She was introduced to the sport when a Venezuelan breath club invited her to the driver’s lounge, but she did not begin racing until she was 24. His knowledge was mainly intellectual until he started racing. Duno has master’s degrees in organizational development, maritime architecture, marine business, marine biology, and previous naval engineering expertise.
3. Simona de Silvestro
Simona de Silvestro was born 1 September 1988, and she is a Swiss-Italian racing driver, currently employed by Porsche as a factory driver. She previously drove for Amlin Andretti in the 2015/16 season of the FIA Formula E Championship and several years in the IndyCar Series. Her nicknames are “Iron Maiden” and “Swiss Miss.”
4. Cyndie Allemann
Cyndie Allemann was born on 4 April 1986 in Moutier, a Swiss racing driver. She is the daughter of former Swiss champion Kurt Allemann and racer Ken Allemann. After starting his career in kart racing, he switched to auto racing in a Renault Speed Trophy F2000 in 2004 and finished 6th overall. The following year, she moved to the higher-rated German championship for similar cars and finished 12th. In 2006, she progressed to the Formel 3 Cup, finishing in 9th and pole position at EuroSpeedway. Lausitz. The following year, she drove in the Formula 3 Euro Race for the British team Manor Motorsport racing a Dallara-Mercedes, although she entered all 20 titles but was not scored and was not placed in the season standings.
In 2008, Allemann signed on to race in the Firestone Indy Lights series for American Spirit Racing. She will place 14th in the final standings with her best result. In July, she was 4th in the second race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Course. Allemann races in Firestone Freedom 100 2008. During the 2010 season, she teamed up with Natacha Gachnang and raced for Swiss team Matech in a GT1 class Ford GT. Primarily racing in the FIA GT1 World Championship, she also raced in the Le Mans 2010 24 Hours. She drove for Hitotsuyama Racing using an Audi R8 LMS during the 2012 Super GT season.
5. Ashley Force Hood
Ashley Force Hood was born November 29, 1982, and she is a former John Force Racing Top Fuel Funny Car (TF/FC) drag racer. Her parents are John Force, a 16-time NHRA Top Fuel Funny Car national champion, and Laurie Force. Her husband is Daniel Hood, who works for John Force Racing. She stopped racing in 2011 because she and her husband were expecting their first child. With the birth of their child, Force Hood has announced her retirement from competitive racing.
In November 2007, Force was named Rookie of the Year (Funny Car division) by the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series. Force won her first NHRA Professional-category race on April 27, 2008, at the NHRA Summit Southern Nationals in Commerce, Georgia, defeating her father in the final round, becoming the first woman to win in TF/FC.
6. Michèle Mouton
Michèle Mouton, a former rally driver from France, was born on June 23, 1951. In 1982, she competed in the World Rally Title with the Audi factory team, winning four times and finishing second in the drivers’ world championship.
7. Maryeve Dufault
Maryeve Dufault is a professional Canadian racing driver, model, and advertising spokeswoman born on February 16, 1982. She’s competed in the Skip Barber, Formula BMW, Formula Renault, Star Mazda, NASCAR Canadian Tire Series, ARCA Racing Series, and NASCAR Nationwide Series, among other series. In addition, she has been on several television shows as a model, including The Price Is Right.v
8. Sarah Fisher
Sarah Marie Fisher, an American retired professional racing car driver, was born on October 4, 1980, and competed in the Indy Racing League (IRL) (now IndyCar Series) and the Indianapolis 500 regularly from 1999 to 2010. In 2004 and 2005, she also competed in the NASCAR West Series. Fisher competed in 81 IndyCar Series races, finishing second in the 2001 Infiniti Grand Prix of Miami, the highest finish for a woman in the series until Danica Patrick’s triumph in the 2008 Indy Japan 300. Fisher was the first female driver to take a pole position in a significant American open-wheel race in 2002. In addition, she has competed in the Indianapolis 500 nine times, the most of any woman.
9. Sabine Schmitz
Sabine Schmitz was a professional motor racing driver from Germany and television personality who lived from 14 May 1969 until 16 March 2021. She was raised in one of the communities nested within the Nürburgring race circuit and was born in Adenau to a hotel and catering business family. She initially prepared to enter the same profession as her parents before pursuing a career in racing, driving for BMW and Porsche.
She became a cult legend on television after her participation on the BBC’s Top Gear, where she made regular appearances alongside several of the program’s presenters and was an expert on the Nürburgring track, winning two victories in endurance races during her driving career on the circuit. Schmitz died of cancer at the age of 51 in March 2021, after being diagnosed in late 2017.
10. Susie Wolff
Suzanne Wolff (née Stoddart) is a former British professional racing driver and the CEO of Venturi Racing in Formula E. She was born on December 6, 1982.
John and Sally Stoddart ran a motorcycle store in Oban, and her father was a competitive motorcycle racer. She rose through the ranks of motorsport, starting in karting and progressing to Formula Renault and Formula Three before joining Mercedes-Benz in the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters (DTM). She was signed to serve as a development driver by Williams in Formula One in 2012. She made history at the 2014 British Grand Prix at Silverstone, becoming the first woman to compete in a Formula One race weekend in 22 years. Wolff announced her retirement from motorsport on November 4, 2015, after competing in the Race of Champions at the end of November. Wolff joined Channel 4 in the United Kingdom as an analyst for their Formula One coverage in 2016.
11. Rahel Frey
Rahel Frey is a factory Audi racing driver from Switzerland born on February 23, 1986, in Niederbipp, Canton of Bern. She has raced in the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0, the International Formula Master, and the German Formula Three Championship. In the 2010 24 Hours of Le Mans, Frey raced in the LMGT1 category. Natacha Gachnang and Cyndie Allemann, both Swiss female drivers, shared the #61 Matech Competition Ford GT. All three Fords competing in the race were forced to abandon the race.
12. Ana Beatriz
Ana “Bia” Beatriz Caselato Gomes de Figueiredo, also known as Bia Figueiredo, is a Brazilian racing driver who was born on March 18, 1985. On July 12, 2008, she won her first Indy Lights race at Nashville Superspeedway, making her the series’ first female winner. Bia won her second Indy Lights race on June 20, 2009, at Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa, becoming the first woman to win a race car event.
13. Shannon McIntosh
Shannon McIntosh is a professional race car driver from the United States races for Cunningham Motorsports in the ARCA Racing Series. She was born on July 24, 1989. In 2011, she raced for Pabst Racing Services and Cape Motorsports alongside Wayne Taylor Racing in the US F2000 National Championship. In 2010, she competed in the USAC Midgets for car constructor and owner Bob East.
14. Leilani Munter
Leilani Maaja Münter, an American former professional car racing driver and environmental activist, was born on February 18, 1974. She competed in the ARCA Menards Series and the Firestone Indy Lights, an IndyCar development series. Cornelius, North Carolina, is where she currently resides.
15. Pippa Mann
Pippa Mann is a racing driver from the United Kingdom who competes in the IndyCar Series. She was born on August 11, 1983. She was born in the United Kingdom, in the city of London.
16. Courtney Force
Courtney Force-Rahal is a former drag racer who competed on the NHRA series. She was born on June 20, 1988. For John Force Racing, she drove the Advance Auto Parts Chevy Camaro SS Funny Car. She is the youngest daughter of John Force, a 16-time NHRA World Funny Car Champion, and Laurie Force. She studied in Communications at Cal State Fullerton and graduated with honors. At the 22nd annual NHRA Northwest Nationals in Kent, Washington, on July 19, 2009, Force-Rahal won her maiden national event in the Top Alcohol Dragster category. Force-Rahal joined John Force Racing as the fourth driver after her sister, Ashley, announced her retirement from competitive racing in 2011. Force-Rahal passed her sister for the funniest Car wins by a female driver in NHRA history on July 27, 2014.
17. Natacha Gachnang
Natacha Gachnang is a race driver from Switzerland cousin of former Formula One driver Natacha Gachnang Sébastien Buemi. She was born in Vevey, Switzerland, on October 27, 1987. She raced again in 2013 after being part of the first all-female crew to compete in the 24 Hours of Le Mans since 1991.
18. Carmen Jordá
Carmen Jordá Buades is a Spanish racing driver born on May 28, 1988. She worked as a development driver for the Formula One team’s Lotus and Renault Sport from 2015 to 2017. Her selection by Lotus made her the 11th woman to drive for a Formula One team in history. She has also competed in other motorsport events such as GP3, Indy Lights, etc. The Le Mans Series is a racing series in the United States. She was born in the Spanish town of Alcoy and now resides in Valencia.
19. María de Villota
Maria de Villota Comba was a Spanish racing driver who lived from January 13, 1980, to October 11, 2013. She is the daughter of Emilio de Villota, a former Formula One driver, and the sister of Emilio de Villota Jr, who also drove in Formula Palmer Audi. De Villota was recovering from severe head and face injuries after crashing during straight-line testing for the Marussia Formula One team just before his death.
20. Inessa Tushkanova
Inessa Tushkanova is a Ukrainian model and race car driver born on July 17, 1987. He earned a degree in Practical Psychology from the Interregional Academy of Administrative Personnel in Kyiv, where he completed his undergraduate studies.
21. Mikaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky
Mikaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky was born in Karlstad on November 13, 1992, and is a Swedish racing driver for PWR Racing in the STCC TCR Scandinavia Touring Car Championship.
22. Johanna Long
Johanna Robbins (née Long) is an American professional stock car racer born on May 26, 1992. She took first place in the 2010 Snowball Derby. Long’s father raced late models, and she wanted to start racing karts when she was five years old, which he permitted her to do when she was eight. Before moving to the model at 12, she became a racing icon. She won the Gulf Coast title in 2008, which featured races in Pensacola and Mobile, Alabama, and the late model track championship at Pensacola’s Five Flags Speedway.
23. Vicky Piria
Vittoria “Vicky” Piria, an Italian-British racing driver, was born in Milan on November 11, 1993. She presently competes in the Formula Renault Eurocup and W Series. Piria started karting in 2003 and spent most of her career racing in her home country of Italy, working her way up from the junior ranks to the KF3 category by 2008.
24. Brittany Force
Brittany Leighton Force, an NHRA drag racer and 2017 NHRA Drag Racing Series Top Fuel dragster champion, was born on July 8, 1986. She is the sister of drag racers Courtney Force and Ashley Force Hood and the daughter of drag racer John Force.
25. Hailie Deegan
Hailie Rochelle Deegan is an American professional stock car racing driver born on July 18, 2001. She is a full-time NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver for David Gilliland Racing, driving the No. 1 Ford F-150. Deegan is a Ford Performance driver who previously worked for Toyota Racing Development. Deegan grew up racing on dirt and off-road, but in 2016 he switched to asphalt to pursue a career in stock car racing. In 2018, she made her NASCAR debut in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West. In the 2018 and 2019 seasons, she became the first female driver to win a race in the West Series. She is Brian Deegan’s daughter.
26. Jennifer Jo Cobb
Jennifer Jo Cobb was born in June 1973, is an American professional stock car racing driver and team owner. She drives the No. 10 Chevrolet Silverado for her team, Jennifer Jo Cobb Racing, in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series full-time. She’s previously raced in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, ARCA Menards Series, and NASCAR Whelen Euro Series.
27. Erica Enders
Erica Lee Enders is an American drag racing driver born on October 8, 1983, in Houston, Texas. Enders has won four titles in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Pro Stock class, and she still competes full-time in that class. In addition, she presently competes in the NHRA Pro Modified class.
28. Deborah Renshaw
Deborah Renshaw-Parker was born on October 28, 1975, and is a former NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series driver. Renshaw debuted in NASCAR in 2001 and 2002, competing in the NASCAR D Weekly Series. She finished in the top ten times in those two seasons and set a qualification record as a pole at Riverview Speedway.
29. Caitlin Shaw
Caitlin Shaw is a professional stock car racing driver from the United States born on August 28, 1989. Shaw is NASCAR’s second-youngest female driver in the top three series (behind Johanna Robbins). She is also the first and only woman from New Mexico to participate in NASCAR’s top three divisions. Shaw was the first American spokesperson for GirlRacer.co.uk, an international online magazine. She continues to support women in athletics by speaking with children at various children’s hospitals, schools, and seminars on the power of sport.
30. Melanie Troxel
Melanie Troxel is a drag racer, and she has competed in Top Fuel, Funny Car, and Pro Modified. She was born on August 31, 1972. She is the only woman to win both Top Fuel and Funny Car races. The Women’s Sports Foundation recognized her Sportswoman of the Year in 2006 as she became the first driver to reach five straight championship finals in the same year.
31. Shea Holbrook
Shea Holbrook is an American professional racing driver, entrepreneur, and publicist born on April 10, 1990. She is currently retired and planning a family. Holbrook drove a dragster to help the world record for timed cycling land speed at the Bonneville Salt Flats in 2018, drafting with Denise Mueller-Korenek. The two averaged 183.932 miles per hour. Denise Mueller-Korenek set the world record.
32. Alli Owens
Alexandra “Alli” Owens is a professional stock car racing driver from the United States born on September 2, 1988. She part-time drove the No. 97 Chevrolet Camaro for Obaika Racing in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. She also raced part-time in the ARCA Racing Series (from 2008 to 2010).
33. Katherine Legge
Katherine Anne Legge is a British professional car racing driver who competes in the Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy. She was born on July 12, 1980. Richard Hammond’s Crash Course also features her.
34. Shawna Robinson
Shawna Robinson is an American retired professional car racing driver born on November 30, 1964. She raced in NASCAR’s three national touring series and the ARCA Bondo/Mar-Hyde Series and the Charlotte/Daytona Dash Series. Robinson is one of 16 women in the NASCAR Cup Series and one of three women to compete in the Daytona 500, the sport’s most prestigious race.
35. Vanina Ickx
Vanina Ickx is a Belgian racing driver born on February 16, 1975. Her father, racing driver Jacky Ickx, and his first wife, Catherine, are her parents. Ickx began racing at a young age, entering the BMW Compact Cup in 1996 with Stéphane De Groodt, the Cup’s most successful participant. She had her Cup racer in 1997 before moving up to the Belgian Procar series in 1998, which followed Super Production rules.
36. Tatiana Calderón
Tatiana Calderón Noguera is a Colombian racing driver who works as a test driver for the Alfa Romeo Formula One team and competes in the Super Formula Championship for Drago Corse with ThreeBond and the FIA World Endurance Championship for Richard Mille Racing.
37. Christina Nielsen
Christina Nielsen is the first female to win a championship in the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship series. She was born on January 10, 1992, in Hrsholm, Denmark. Lars-Erik Nielsen, a racing driver who competed in the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the 2000s, is her father.
38. Sophia Flörsch
Sophia Flörsch is a racing driver from Germany who drives Abt Sportsline in the DTM and the Richard Mille Racing Team in the FIA World Endurance Championship. She was born on December 1, 2000, in Grünwald. She has previously competed in the Ginetta Junior Championship, FIA Formula 3, Formula Regional European Championship, European F3, and Formula 4 in Germany and Italy.
39. Vivien Keszthelyi
Vivien Keszthelyi, a Hungarian racing driver who began her career at 13, was born on December 7, 2000. She is an Audi Sport Racing Academy member. In 2014, Keszthelyi made her professional debut in the Suzuki Swift Cup Europe series. In 2015, she joined the Audi Sport Racing Academy as the youngest and only female participant and the first Hungarian racing driver with factory ties. She won both the sprint and endurance categories in the Central European Zone Trophy in 2016, her maiden race in an Audi TT.
40. Gosia Rdest
Malgorzata “Gosia” Rdest is a Polish female racing driver and businesswoman born on 14 January 1993 in Yrardów. She is presently a W Series competitor.