Who watches moto races and not notice the lovely women that grace such events?
Even Storm Troopers can’t miss these lovely creatures:
Still in first gear? Maybe not after these:
Whether the view is from the top:
Or from the bottom:
There’s no way you can miss these angles.
Scantily dressed or not, these pit girls have long been a big part of a wider show around car races, F1 included.
Pole Position, anyone?
Don’t stare too much, some polea may go out of position.
Grid Girls, Pit Girls
In 1976, female driver Lella Lombardi competed in the Austrian Grand Prix. It has been more than four decades since that race and since a woman competed in an F1 race. Ever since that time, the women have ruled the sidelines not the races.
Grid girls, pit girls, paddock girls, umbrella girls or whatever you call them, have long been a part of the sport before they became an issue of controversy. The first grid girl was Rosa Ogawa, who appeared in motor races in Japan during the late 60’s to represent the winners.
While some may refer to grid girls purely as eye candy, these girls have jobs to do during racing events. Those who say they are objectified do not understand the roles that these girls play at these events.
Grid girls are models who conduct promotional activities on behalf of the race sponsors. Aside from being goodwill ambassadors, their duties also include holding umbrellas or the driver’s name board, lining up while drivers make their entrance or stand in the podium behind the winners.
Easy as these may sound, pit girls are an integral part of F1 ( and racing in general ).
Under Strong Review
Unfortunately, the presence of grid girls has come into question this year. F1 managing director for motosports Ross Brawn, recently told BBC Radio 5 that the presence of these women during races ‘is under strong review’ by F1’s new management:
“We’re trying to respect all parties,” Brawn said. “There’s a lot of people ( who ) respect the tradition of the grid girls and there’s people who feel that it has become a bit dated, so we’re addressing that.”
Some organizations have taken measures to address the matter. For instance, the World Endurance Championship ( WEC ) stopped using grid girls since 2015. In F1 itself, male models were used instead of the grid girls at the Monaco Grand Prix. In some instances, children were used instead of grid girls. During the 2016 Australian V8 Supercars Championship, the girls were discarded.
Addressing the issue won’t be an easy task. As Brawn’s boss, F1 chief executive officer Chase Carey added, they have to hear out as many points of view as possible:
“What we need to do is get as many points of view as possible and make a decision right for the future of the sport.”
Hot Cars and Hot Girls
Part of what the sport is today is because of the grid girls. Hot cars and hot girls are a good pair, to be honest. And they sell well. That is a fact. If you take away something that has been a part of the success of the sport, it may affect the appeal of the sport and it’s future as well. Or maybe not at all.
There is nothing wrong having grid girls around. The issue with it is that it supposedly promotes the stereotype that people have been fighting for decades - that women ought to be in the sidelines not in the driver’s seat. That it’s men who race the cars and women only adorn such races.
"On the list of things I have been dealing with, grid girls wasn't really up there on top, with all respect," Carey said. "Is it something from the past, or is it something distinct that should be part of the future?
"I don't think it will be a personal decision for me. I may have a point of view but, when you have a sport, you are dealing with teams and a large ecosystem and a large fan base that is very passionate. There is never going to be a consensus, but a set of views."
The larger ecosystem and its fanbase are likely to side with tradition, and let the grid girls stay because they add appeal to the sport. What do you think?
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