Maria de Villota- LRGP Test Driver

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    Felipe Bomeny

    Numerous Spanish sources have revealed that female Spanish racer Maria de Villota is close to signing a contract to be a LRGP test driver in 2012. She’s the daughter of former F1 driver Emilio de Villota, Sr. and she has quite some sponsors. This can mean that she will succeed Romain Grosjean as an LRGP test driver and her money will help fund Grosjean for a 2012 campaign with his manager Éric Bouiller’s team.


    It’s good to see that a women driver is finnally getting a drive, all be it test drive, in Formula one. I haven’t heard of her but she must be quick or rich to get a test drive with a biggish team good on her.


    I’ve heard she’s rubbish and she’s only getting the seat because of her gender. Which is a shame – they could give the reserve/third/test driver role to Kevin Korjus or Richie Stanaway, who are both very talented and part of their young driver programme.

    Unless they go for a huge number of reserve drivers like this year.


    @rdpunk I haven’t heard of her either, but a quick glance at her wikipedia page, along with the pages of the seasons of motorsport she’s competed in suggests it’s rich rather than fast.

    A handful of 10th-20th place results from 6 races in FPA in 2009, with a best result of 7th. A best result of 7th from 6 Superleague races in 2009, 7th from 10 in a single Euroseries 3000 race in 2008, 18th and 20th from 26 in the Spanish rounds of the 2007 WTCC, and 21st and DNF from 25 in the spanish rounds of the 2006 WTCC.

    Not exactly a glowing career. Not glowing with talent, at least.


    She is a reserve driver, so very probably she won’t race at all next year. And as Portugoose said, her money could help Grosjean get a drive, which would be great. Or, at least, Lotus will have more money, which only means a better car!
    I see it as a good thing rather than a bad one.


    It doesn’t really mean much

    LRGP have an awful lot of “test drivers”

    Ho-Ping-Tung is a LRGP test driver too, and I’m not sure he’s ever got to drive the car


    If that’s true then all the effort the team did behind the test drivers have no reason,no disrespect but I don’t think having a female test driver will help the team.The team should have Petrov,Senna & Grosjean with them,if the latter can’t make it for the race seat then the team should stick with him as a test driver.

    Dave Tett

    I have never considered myself sexist but I really don’t want to see a woman in F1! Its such a male dominated sport and the majority of women tend not be in interested in motor-racing although I would agree that Formula1 is the most watched of the motor-sports in that demographic. Buts its also about physical strength and I mean this with no disrespect but the man is superior in athleticism. These F1 drivers are in top physical condition. I also don’t believe the woman would get respect in the paddock and this would definitely affect her which would effect her race performance. Their is more barriers for woman to overcome then men in F1. I know its all about breaking the glass ceiling etc but in some things maybe it should just be left alone rather than for the sake of proving a point. And this is a point!! Wikipedia page isn’t promising so this is definitely a money thing. Hopefully LRGP will use the money then shaft her and helping to boost Grosjean into a seat!

    Note: Apologies if anyone has been offended by this, its not my intention I just really wanted to voice my opinion because I feel quite strongly about this topic.

    Prisoner Monkeys

    The problem with women in Formula 1 is the double standards. Any woman who races is going to be under constant scrutiny, simply because her performance will lend credibility to – or remove it from – the idea of women racing drivers. Whoever races is going to have to be up there with Lewis Hamilton (Louise Hamilton?) in terms of skill, because anything less is going to hurt the prospects of other women looking to break into the sport (I had high hopes for Latvian driver Karlīne Štāla a few years ago, but she’s gone quiet). If the first woman in the modern era of the sport cannot succeed, subsequent women will have a harder time breaking in. And I think that, for the good of the sport, she has to be talented. The last thing we need is for the next female Formula 1 driver to be another Danica Patrick …

    Besides, I don’t think de Villota has what it takes for Formula 1. She’s not particularly quick, and at 31, she’s probably too old to make her debut.


    It’s a realy shame @ajokay that she is a pay driver. Personally I don’t mind if there is a female driver in the sport, just as long as they are quick enough to challenge the rest of the grid. Fair enough, there might be a talented driver out there that could challenge and deserve a race seat it’s just there few and far between. What’s going to hurt the sport and for women coming into the sport is that F1 is a prodominatly a male sport. Male drivers, teams and the majority of the paddock is males with a few females thrown in.

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