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Negative reactions flow in after Stirling Moss comments

Apr 16, 2013, 8:00 PM EDT

AUTO-F1-PRIX-WOMEN-FILES Getty Images

Reactions to Sir Stirling Moss’ comments on female drivers have flowed fast and furious in the last 24-plus hours, and been decidedly negative.

The comments have created a firestorm in the last day or so as Moss, widely regarded as the best driver to have never won a Formula One World Championship, made the remarks in a BBC Radio interview.

A handful of thoughts include those from NBC Sports Network Formula One pit reporter Will Buxton, in his blog which he called “Crumpet-gate.” Of Moss, Buxton says his opinions are “plain wrong,” but also says those asking for his opinion should have known precisely what they were going to get.

Jalopnik editor Matt Hardigree called Moss “not just wrong, but wrong in a particularly offensive and sexist way.” Alex Lloyd, a four-time Indianapolis 500 starter and former IndyCar Series rookie-of-the-year who now writes for Yahoo! Autos, says Moss ignores the accomplishments of the current crop of female racing drivers.

“I still admire Moss… but comments like this are uneducated, old-fashioned and idiotic,” writes Lloyd.

One of the female drivers currently competing on a national stage, Pirelli World Challenge driver Shea Holbrook, took to RACER magazine to assemble on op-ed of her own describing the struggles she has faced throughout her career and what it takes to press ahead.

“I understand Moss is from a different era but in today’s world there’s a difference between tradition and equality,” writes Holbrook. “I can handle ‘old-school’ mentality but his comment, whether he intended it to be this way or not, was absurdly sexist and badly thought through.”

  1. apexassassin - Apr 16, 2013 at 11:01 PM

    So where are all the talented female drivers?

    I see a lot of hype but not a lot of talent and I’d love see someone have the ability to prove the nay-sayers wrong. So far, in open wheel racing it hasn’t happened.

    There’s poor taste and poor phrasing and then there is abuse. This article doesn’t show the actual statements, so there’s nothing left to say here.

    • icemanpjn - Apr 17, 2013 at 12:18 AM

      I’m all for successful female drivers, but in general we don’t really have them. We get hyped-up drivers like Danica, but the hype far exceeds her ability. She sometimes has a good run, but quite often does poorly. Normally when dropping in on a race involving DP, if I want to find her in the field I have to look toward the back. They talk about her as a potential F1 driver, but F1 is a road series and in IndyCar her road record was pretty shabby. She gets the “for a girl” treatment and when running in the back half gets all the coverage of a race leader just because she has boobs.

      Folks wanting to hype up female drivers like to pick out the few success stories but then treat that top one percent as if representative of the other 99%. You can’t point to Michael Schumacher and say “See, male drivers are all seven-time champions,” and likewise you can’t point to a female driver with some success and treat that as evidence that female drivers are great.

      I actually dream of my daughter growing up to be a race car driver. Folks like my parents then bring up Danica Patric. I shoot them down and say that I don’t want her to be like Danica. I want her to be known for skill on the track, not for her rack.

      • apexassassin - Apr 17, 2013 at 8:11 PM

        Well just to name two offhand in other categories:

        Michele Mouton is World Rally Legend. Though some say it was because she was in an Audi, I say go look at the films, that chick has balls of steel.

        and

        Shirley Muldowney who won three NHRA Winston Top Fuel championships and 18 NHRA national events.

        I’m sure there are more, but I just don’t about them and I’m certain that somewhere, some little girl heard the negative press and has made her mind up to be the best F1 driver ever. Good for her!

  2. techmeister1 - Apr 19, 2013 at 12:25 AM

    There are so many successful woman in racing that it’s an insult to even ask such a stupid question. Sterling has become senile and made a foolish comment. It’s good that people correct this type of blatant disparagement and inaccurate, meritless opinion. It’s a shame Sterling didn’t use better judgment but I’ll cut him some slack based on his age and mental ability.

    Anyone who really wants to know about successful woman in racing just needs to spend a few minutes searching.

    http://msn.foxsports.com/nascar/lists/Top-Female-drivers-in-racing-today#tab=photo-title=Ana+Beatriz&photo=30530323

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/655277-danica-patrick-and-her-fellow-females-looking-at-the-female-racecar-driver

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_female_NASCAR_drivers

    There are countless other successful woman racers in addition to the more notable recent racers listed in the links above but it took all of 30 seconds to find those above.

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