Why are there no women in Formula 1?
A time ago, I heard one of the most important and influential men in Formula 1 say that women should not be taken seriously in this sport. He justified his argument by saying that women not physically capable of driving Formula 1 cars.
The truth is that a driver of the highest level in motorsports must undergo very demanding endurance and strength training. It is also true that discipline and talent are vital to compete and win such a championship.
These abilities are not exclusive to men. So why are there no women in Formula 1?
Although the female presence in this sport has increased in the last 20 years and it is possible to see women developing in various areas, there is still a significant bias that keeps them out of the picture: competition.
Since its creation in 1950, only ten women who, based on their effort and talent, have driven a Formula 1 car. Interestingly, for every 100 men, only two or three women seek to venture into this discipline.
Education established gender roles, and existing role models play an essential role in female participation in activities considered exclusively for men.
What would have happened if Megan Rapinoe, one of the most recognized soccer players of recent times, had broken the cultural paradigm 10 or 15 years ago? I can say that we should see more girls, young people, and women interested in venturing into soccer and other men’s sports.
People should be free to choose their interests without gender stereotypes. Success does not depend on being born male or female.
Therefore, it is crucial to support our daughters and sons in their interests and teach them to trust their abilities.
Currently, several women continue searching to break the gender barrier that does not allow them to compete in Formula 1.
The names of Tatiana Calderón, a pilot who became the first Latin American to drive a Formula 1 car, and the Chihuahuan Alma Macías, the first Mexican engineer to collaborate with the Ferrari team, stand out.
An exclusive series for women
In 2019, the creation of a new competition exclusively for women called the Women Series (W Series), which, while marking an important milestone in motorsports history, has generated divided opinions among current drivers.
While some considered creating a women’s motorsports league to increase their presence and participation, others see it as a step backward in terms of equality and gender segregation.
I celebrate the creation of the W Series because, like the organization itself, they seek to be a platform that gives impulse to girls and young people interested in motorsports to reach Formula 1.
Those young women who today dabble in a discipline still dominated by men will become role models, break many more glass ceilings and break down barriers.