and gentlemen...start your engines!
In honor of Women's History Month, we're taking a glimpse at the top five female racecar drivers of all time. Competing in a male dominated sport, these women stand out because of their long list of accomplishments.
Not only is she the "First Lady of Drag Racing," she's also a pioneer in auto racing. Muldowney goes down in the books as the first women to get a license from the National Hot Rod Association to drive a Top Fuel dragster, and she won the NHRA Top Fuel Championship in 1977, 1980 and 1983. Overall she went on to win a total of 18 NHRA national titles. In 1983, the movie "Heart Like a Wheel" was made about her story.
Janet was the first woman to qualify for the Indianapolis 500 in 1977 and the first women to race in the NASCAR Winston Cup World 600.
Ashley Force Hood
As the daughter of NHRA drag-racing legend John Force, Ashley has a passion for the sport at a young age and made a name for herself wining Rookie of the Year in 2007. The next season, she beat her father, a 15-time National Funny Car Champion, in the NHRA Summit Southern Nationals, not to mention being the first woman in that drag-racing category to win.
At only thirty-one years old, Patrick has accomplished so much in the sport of racing. Patrick is best known for becoming the first woman to lead the Indy 500 and the first woman to win the pole position at the Daytona 500. In the 2012 season, Patrick moved to NASCAR full-time and became the highest finishing female (fourth place) in the Sam's Town 30 Nationwide Series Race.
Lyn St. James
St. James became the first female to win Rookie of the Year after finishing 11th at the 1992 Indianapolis 500. Some of St. James' accomplishments include racing in 15 Indy races including CART Championship and Indy Racing League, scoring two top-10 qualifying spots and one top-10 finish. In 2000, at fifty-three years old, she was the oldest driver in the field at the 2000 Indy 500.