Women on the F1 podium might not seem like a novelty right now. Believe it or not, though, it was only 9 years ago when Red Bull broke the mold and had a woman take the podium honors for the first time at the 2013 Bahrain GP.
While the sport thrives to inculcate diversity in all aspects, female presence is something that has been getting noticed recently, and most importantly the impact that they have on the sport.
With the recent rise to fame of Hannah Schmitz and her role in the Red Bull strategic unit, it made sense to trace back the growing female presence in the Formula 1 paddock and list down the women who have stood on the podium.
#1 Lady Ginny Williams (1986 F1 British GP)
Virginia 'Ginny' Williams, the wife of the late Sir Frank Williams and mother of Claire Williams, was the first woman to stand on an F1 podium. She took to the podium alongside the two Williams drivers, Nigel Mansell and Nelson Piquet, to collect the constructors' trophy at the 1986 British GP.
Sir Williams was supposed to be the original recipient, but he was marking his return to the sport and his team four months after a terrible accident that left him tetraplegic. In the end, it was Ginny, someone who had a huge role to play in the success of the Williams team, that went to the podium to receive the award.
#2 Gill Jones (2013 F1 Bahrain GP)
Gill Jones, Red Bull Racing's head of trackside electronics, stood on the podium at the 2013 Bahrain GP. The race saw Sebastian Vettel fend off Lotus' Kimi Raikkonen to win the race for Red Bull.
Red Bull, on its part, became the first team in history ever to have a woman collect the constructors' trophy.
#3 Kim Stevens (2015 F1 Abu Dhabi GP)
Kim Stevens, Trackside Aerodynamicist for Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula 1 Team, made an appearance on the podium alongside Nico Rosberg, Lewis Hamilton, and Kimi Raikkonen at the Yas Marina circuit in 2015.
Stevens, responsible for collecting and measuring the effectiveness of aero upgrades and improvements at race weekends, was one of the first female faces from Mercedes to start a new trend for women on the podium that continues to date.
#4 Victoria Vowles (2016 F1 US Grand Prix)
Victoria Vowles, Partner Services Director at the time for Mercedes, made an appearance at the US GP in Austin, in 2016. The Silver Arrows were dominant once again in the race and picked up another 1-2 finish for the team.
#5 Margarita Torres Diez (2019 F1 Canadian GP)
As mentioned earlier, Mercedes started the tradition of bringing female representatives to podium ceremonies and continued it in the 2019 Canadian GP. The race was controversial with Sebastian Vettel forced to cede the first position to Lewis Hamilton due to a 5-second time penalty.
This time around, it was Trackside Power Unit engineer Margarita Torres Diez who joined Lewis Hamilton to collect the constructors' trophy. Having worked for Mercedes since 2014, she is currently still part of the team and is based at the High-Performance Powertrains factory in Brixworth.
#6 Hannah Schmitz (2019 F1 Brazilian GP)
Does the name sound familiar? Hannah Schmitz is the name on everyone's lips these days with the way she handled strategic decisions for Max Verstappen in Hungary. Having said that, Schmitz has made her mark with the team even before that as she spearheaded the strategy that helped the Dutchman win the 2019 Brazilian GP. Subsequently, she joined Verstappen on the podium to collect the constructors' trophy.
Schmitz is the Principal Strategy Engineer at Red Bull Racing. She helps the Milton Keynes-based outfit tackle different rival strategies over the weekend.
#7 Britta Seeger (2019 F1 Abu Dhabi GP)
Britta Seeger, a member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and the second female member of the board, joined Lewis Hamilton at the 2019 Abu Dhabi GP to collect the constructors' trophy.
Britta joined Mercedes-Benz AG in 1989 and has been a member of the Mercedes-Benz AG Board since 2017. She is responsible for marketing and sales and holds positions on the board of directors of the Mercedes-EQ Formula E team and Mercedes-Benz GP.
#8 Holly Chapman (2020 F1 Austrian GP)
Holly Chapman made an appearance on the podium alongside Valtteri Bottas at the 2020 Austrian GP. Chapman was Bottas’ Trackside Power Unit engineer since January 2020 and has been a part of the Mercedes team for more than 8 years now.
#9 Stephanie Travers(2020 F1 Styrian GP)
Stephanie Travers, Petronas' trackside fluid engineer, joined Lewis Hamilton on the podium for the 2020 Styrian GP. The 2020 season was primarily dominated by Mercedes and it showed in this race as well, as the team secured a 1-2 finish. On that day, Stephanie became the first black woman to stand on the podium in the sport's history.
#10 Joanna Fleet (2022 F1 Spanish GP)
Joanna Fleet, the head of Human Resources at Red Bull, made her way to the podium after a spectacular win for Max Verstappen. Fleet has been working for the Milton Keynes-based outfit for 8 years and leading the Human Resources department for more than a year now.
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