Top 5 Women in the history of NASCAR
Even though racing is perceived as a man’s sport, there were always women who graced it with their presence on the track. And no, we aren’t thinking of grid girls, but women who successfully drove alongside many legends, sometimes even beating them in their own game. So, in celebration of female drivers in a man’s game, we are giving you a list of the most famous NASCAR women.
5. Ethel Mobley
Before making just two starts in the inaugural 1949 NASCAR season, Ethel Mobley raced against her brothers, NASCAR legends Tim, Fonty and Bob Flock, beating Bob and Fonty in her first event by finishing 11th.
4. Lella Lombardi
The only female driver ever to earn Formula One points also competed in NASCAR in 1977 at the Firecracker 400. Out of three women competing in the event, Lella Lombardi was the best, finishing 31st out of 41 after 103 completed laps.
3. Janet Guthrie
An aerospace engineer, Janet Guthrie was also the first woman to drive in a superspeedway event, and the first woman to compete in the Daytona 500. She made her first NASCAR start in 1976, and by the end of her short career, she had 4 top-10 finishes out of 33 races in total. She started in two Daytona 500 races and 3 Indy 500s, becoming the first woman to compete in two of the country’s biggest events.
2. Sara Christian
The first woman in NASCAR started in six races in the inaugural 1949 season, including the very first race ever. Eventually, she finished thirteenth overall, finishing in top 10 twice. In 1950, she made one start, finishing 14th, and then retired from racing.
1. Danica Patrick
Unarguably the most popular female driver of all time, Danica Patrick has driven both in IndyCar and NASCAR series, setting several important records. She is the only woman who won an IndyCar event and her 3rd place at the 2009 Indianapolis 500 is the best women’s race finish at that event. In 2013, Patrick became the first female driver to win a Sprint Cup Series pole position, and in April 2015, she finished ninth at Bristol Motor Speedway, breaking Janet Guthrie’s record for most Top-10 finishes in main NASCAR series.