Apparently, this is a man’s world and that certainly seems to be the case when to comes to bike racing but that is simply not true. Here are some of the most exception female racers from the past and also the future. Eqaully at home in a Hot Weather motorbike jacket on the Paris to Dakar or squeeze into a full on padded racing suit in a MotoGP there are plenty of examples of women competing with men at the highest level and it looks like this will remain the case and even expand.
In Beryl Swain we come to one of our first examples. While it might seem that the its hard to break into the world racing imagine what it must have been like in 1962. Swain was 22nd out of 25 runners but the takes nothing away from her achievement. It caused a stir with health and safety that women were banned until 1978 when Hilary Musson came over to the island to compete, she did so until 1985 an was the inspiration for many others in this article. If you want to show the determination in some of these women, then you should look no further than Patsy Quick. She was the first British woman to race the Paris Dakar rally first attempting it in 2003. However, disaster was to strike, and she had a terrible crash that saw her blinded for a while. Luckily a media helicopter was able to get her to a hospital and surgery was performed saving her life. She went again in 2004 but this time the weather was to be her undoing and then a vehicle breakdown in 2005 put paid to the next attempt. Most people would have given up, but Patsy came again finished the rally on this attempt.
Away from the UK there are a slew of European riders that all seems to have started at an early age, and I do mean early as in in some case 5 years old. One of these is Katja Poensgen for German. She’s been very successful winning the Supermono Championship at only 19. This led to Grand prix in the 250 class. Away from the land of the track and road race Laia Sanz from Spain is an incredibly successful racer who has one the Women’s World trial championship an amazing 13 times. She has also placed well on the Paris Dakar. She beats Katya in the starting early stakes by beginning at 3.
Looking into the future. María Herrera Muñoz from Spain is an amazing emerging talent and only 22. She has put preformed boys, all hungry teenagers looking for a career and is showing all the signs that superbike and MotoGP will be in her future. She’ll be joining Ana Carrasco Gabarrón who at 21 is already in Moto3 and the two have even had a coming together on the track so there is no love lost there. Will we see this two fighting it out for a MotoGP title one day? Time will tell.