Women can’t compete in F1…?

At the beginning of this season, after the “mass hysteria” of grid girls, Carmen Jorda and the incessant drumbeat from many of the English F1 press about why there were no female F1 drivers.

I decided to write an article detailing the racing career of Tatiana Calderon, who had been championed by the English F1 press club as a future F1 driver.

Her story was made even more compelling as she had just been made Sauber’s test driver.

The article was published on both theJudge13 and DriveTribe websites. In it I detailed her career from the Star Mazda Championship (which is an IndyCar feeder series) in 2010, through to her second season of GP3 in 2017.

At the end of the article I simply asked the reader whether based on eight years of racing single seaters, she was the real deal and had F1 potential or was nothing but hype.

Now with four races weekends out of the nine in the 2018 GP3 season done, it would be a good time to do an update.

For those who haven’t read the original article (I recommend you do), a thumbnail of Calederon is: She is a 25 year old from Bogotá, Colombia who has competed in single seaters for eight years, starting in the US in the Star Mazda Championship, then in Europe in regional F3 and European F3.

She is now in her third GP3 season. In the 2016 GP3 season she placed 21st out 27th, and in the 2017 edition 18th out of

GP3 has since its inception in 2010 produced some notable champions, with Bottas, Ocon, Leclerc and Russell to name a few.

The series is a stepping stone to F2 and ultimately F1.

Technically, GP3 is a spec series using a Dallara designed chassis with a Mecachrome 3.4L normally aspirated V6 engine producing 400 HP.

There are nine race weekends, with two races each weekend. A feature race on Saturday and a sprint
race on Sunday.

Points are awarded as shown, plus points for pole position for the feature race and points for fastest lap in both races.

Clearly over a race weekend there is a lot of opportunity to score points.

As previously mentioned, this is Calderon’s third season in GP3. In 2016 she drove for Arden International and in 2017 for DAMS.

For the 2018 campaign she is with Jenzer Motorsport and has American, Juan Manuel Correa, and German, David Beckmann, as teammates.

Both her teammates are 18 years old and in their first full season of GP3 (Correa did do a partial GP3 season in 2017).

Race 1 Race 2 Total
Correa 4 8 12
Beckmann 8 0 8
Calderon 0 0 0

Unfortunately Calderon had a collision in one race and beached the car in another getting two DNF’s.


Spain France
Race 1 Race 2 Race 1 Race 2 Total
Correa 4 8 2 0 14
Beckmann 8 0 0 0 8
Calderon 0 0 0 0 0


Spain France Austria
Race 1 Race 2 Race 1 Race 2 Race 1 Race 2 Total
Correa 4 8 2 0 2 0 14
Beckmann 8 0 0 0 4 0 12
Calderon 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Spain France Austria Great Britain
Race 1 Race 2 Race 1 Race 2 Race 1 Race 2 Race 1 Race 2 Total
Correa 4 8 2 0 2 0 0 0 14
Beckmann 8 0 0 0 4 0 0 0 12
Calderon 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0



Calderon, in eight races, has failed to score even a single point.

She is sitting 18th out of the 20 drivers who compete fulltime and is 100 points behind GP3 series leader Anthoine Hubert. It isn’t hard to see why she has fallen off the English F1 press corps’ radar.

I admire her for trying, but she simply doesn’t have the talent to drive in F1 and it’s questionable whether she has enough talent to be competitive in a junior series like GP3.

I wonder whether the English F1 press even bothered to look at her record before they started hyping her – somehow I doubt

To me it feels more like a need to follow the latest trend, which demands that people think women and men are equal. Which they are not.

We are talking about a sport, that demands physical and mental strength. In sports no one is equal! That’s why we have Championships.

It decides who is better than whom, at the end of a certain period. This is, of course, influenced by many factors. Especially in F1, with the biggest factor being the car.

But in GP3, a spec series, the car is of a lesser influence. With the notable exception of mechanical failures. The sole reason of junior formulas is to differentiate between those good enough to step up the ladder and those not good enough to do the same.

It does not look at gender, it does not look at race. It looks at talent and results. And money…

Since these days money is equally (or more) important as talent. But being dead last in a championship is something even money
can’t fix.

I’d be happy to be proven wrong in the comments, so please hit me with your best shot.

14 responses to “Women can’t compete in F1…?

  1. So would she lose her sauber job after this season? It’s not like she does anything anyway…

  2. ‘Especially in F1, with the biggest factor being the car.‘
    That line throws your argument out the window doesn’t it?

  3. Mmm….men better than women? Hell, if I want total silence in the oddball house then YES!! Women can tolerate a greater G force on the body and have a greater capacity for multiple tasking but males have the stamina and body mass factor. My thoughts as to why a lady hasn’t reached F1…..just watch my wife park the bloody carO:-)

  4. So, because one female driver no other woman can ever become a F1 racer? I’m sorry, this is so silly…

    • You’ve missed the whole point of the article – which is the press hyping a female driver as a future F1 driver, when she has little / no talent, and when you present facts to prove that, you get labeled as sexist

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