Monday, 18 August 2014

Female Drivers in One-Make Series: Germany



Margit Abt - competed in at least one season of the Fiesta Mixed Cup in Germany, in 1991. She was racing with her husband, Hans-Jürgen Abt. Margit was seventh in the women’s standings at the end of the season, with the pair scoring a few top ten finishes. In 2005, she returned to the track for two guest appearances in the SEAT Leon Supercopa, at Hockenheim. 

Brigitte (Biggi) Briel - a regular in German one-make racing in the 1980s. She began racing in the Ford Fiesta Ladies’ Cup in 1982, and teamed up with two other “Fiesta Ladies” for the Nürburgring 24 Hours that summer. She was 51st in the Fiesta, with Anette Gottwald and Barbara Schmitz. Brigitte returned to the Ladies’ Cup, and was eighth in 1984 and seventh in 1985. After the Fiesta Cup, she moved into the Renault 5 Cup, still in Germany. She did two seasons in the Renault, in 1986 and 1987, as the only female driver in the series. She was not among the front-runners. In 1988, she raced in the VLN, in a Group N-spec Ford Sierra Cosworth. She scored two group wins.

Vanessa Lee Engelhardt – raced in the Clio Cup in Germany for at least one season, in 2004. She was driving for the Renault Junior Team. Her final position was 29th, after picking up a few points where she could. That year, she had quite a big accident, but seems to have been unharmed. Towards the end of the season, she was linked with a drive in the 12 Hours of Malaysia in a Porsche 911 GT3, but this does not appear to have happened.

Jutta Fischer - a graduate of the Ford Fiesta Ladies Cup in Germany. She was sixth in the 1985 championship. In 1990, she competed in the Fiesta Mixed Cup, with Thomas Marschall, and won at least one race, at Hockenheim. She returned to the series in 1991, partnering Stefan Pfeiffer, but they were not as successful. Jutta was not in the women’s top ten. Away from Ford one-makes, she also participated in the VLN, and the Nürburgring 24 Hours, with her first race in 1984. She shared a Fiesta with Richard Fischer and Uwe Fischer, but did not finish. In 1990, she drove a Fiesta XR2 with Astrid Hild, Thomas Wirtz and Thomas Marschall. It is unclear whether they finished. She may well have entered other editions of the race, in between those years.

Nadine-Nicole Frentzen - has been trying to put together a motorsport career since 2004, when she took part in a Formula BMW driver selection event  at Valencia. This did not lead to a racing seat. After some other reported testing, she finally got to race in anger in 2011. Partnering Doreen Seidel, she took part in some rounds of the ADAC Chevrolet Cruze Cup in Germany, at Oshersleben. They were not among the front-runners. Nadine-Nicole is the sister of Heinz-Harald Frentzen, and first became known to the public when she was caught driving her mother’s car, on the road, at the age of thirteen.

Victoria Fross - began her racing career in 2012, in a Mini. She did four races in the German Mini Trophy, with a best finish of seventeenth, achieved three times, at Lausitz and Hockenheim. In 2013, she returned to the Mini Trophy, in her car, which she called “Lotte”, and was 16th overall, with a best finish of twelfth. This was recorded at the Sachsenring, and Lausitz. Still in the Mini, she moved up to Division III of the ADAC Procar Series in 2014, driving for the ITC team with Lisa Brunner. She started strongly, with fifth places at the Sachsenring and season’s-best fourths at the Nürburgring, and although she was not quite able to reach the podium, she was still a solid competitor. She was rewarded with sixth place overall. In 2015, she raced in Procar again, in a Mini, and was fifth in the championship. Her best result was third, at Spa. She raced in the Deutsche Tourenwagen Cup (DTC) in 2016, still in a Mini. She was one of the leading drivers in the Production class and was runner-up, with one win and twelve podium finishes. 

Nina Haller – raced in the Mini Challenge in Germany, in 2007. She was 42nd in the championship, after a part-season, and second in the Ladies’ class, behind Katharina König. This was her second season in the series, and the first went very similarly to the second. After 2007, she appears to have retired from racing, but remained involved in motorsport as a press officer for the Gigamot team, who competed in the Mini Challenge with Steffi Halm, among others.

Astrid Hild - appears to have begun her career in 1985, in the Ford Fiesta Ladies’ Cup. She was thirteenth overall, not among the front-runners. In 1991, she reappeared in the Fiesta Mixed Cup, partnering Jupp Bröhling. She finished strongly in some of the Ladies’ races, and was ninth in the Ladies’ standings. In between, she seems to have competed in the VLN, and is recorded as a starter in the 1990 Nürburgring 24 Hours. She shared a Ford Fiesta XR2 with Jutta Fischer, Thomas Marschall and Thomas Wirtz, who were also involved in the Mixed Cup. Previously, in 1988, she raced a Peugeot 205 GTI in the same event.

Nadja Hirth – raced in the Toyota Yaris Cup in Germany, between 2001 and 2003. During her first year, she proved herself a capable driver, and had some top-ten finishes, including an eighth at Lausitz. She was one of a relatively large group of female drivers racing in one-makes in Germany at this time, and was often second in the ladies’ standings, behind Stephanie Neitzel. Her senior career followed six years of junior karting.

Dana Jurthe – raced in the Toyota Yaris Cup in Germany, between 2001 and 2003. She was eighteen years old when she started in the series. Although she was relatively competitive in the women’s category, considering her age and lack of experience, she was not able to challenge for overall honours. Later, she seems to have done some sprinting in Eastern Europe, driving a Reynard single-seater.

Jennifer Kölsch – raced in the Toyota Yaris Cup in Germany, in 2005. She was one of seven female drivers in the series that year, but was not the fastest of them. She was 28th overall in the championship, after some non-finishes. Previously, in 2004, she made some appearances in the German Production Car Championship, driving a VW Lupo. She managed two 18th places at Oschersleben. 

Larissa Könnecker – raced in the Toyota Yaris Cup in 2003. She was not particularly successful, although she was quite inexperienced, and even in the Ladies’ class, up against quite a large field. She does not seem to have raced again after that.

Claudia Ostlender - winner of the 1983 Ford Fiesta Ladies’ Cup in Germany, in her first year of motorsport. She did two more seasons in the Cup, but did not repeat her win. In 1986, she moved over to the Volkswagen Polo Cup, doing a part-season at first. A similar season followed in 1987, but in 1988, she really found some speed and won her first Polo race, at Zolder. She was fifth overall. Some time before 1989, when she retired from motor racing, she won her class three times in VLN races at the Nürburgring. Her cars were a Volkswagen Golf GTi and a Ford Escort RS. At some point, she also set a speed record in a Volkswagen Corrado.

Jasmin Rubatto - German driver who raced in the 2000s, mostly in one-make series. She took part in the MINI Challenge in Germany in 2004, and was ninth overall. Her team-mate in the Ich Liebe Es squad was Kati Droste. Apparently, this was a comeback from “maternity leave”, but details of her career prior to this are not forthcoming. In 2009, she also did four races in the SEAT Leon Supercopa, also in Germany. She was driving as one of SEAT’s guest works drivers.  

Doreen Seidel - began racing in 2011, in the ADAC Cruze Cup, run at Oschersleben. She shared a Chevrolet Cruze with Nadine-Nicole Frentzen. In 2012, she returned to the Cruze Cup, still with the Buchbinder Rent-A-Car team. This year, she shared the car with Ronny Melkus and Freddie Hunt, and was really quite competitive, with two second places and several thirds. In 2013, she spent a season in the Mini Challenge, or most of it. She was fourteenth overall, but did not race for the whole season. She also undertook some test driving for the Abt Sportsline team, for the ADAC GT Masters. In 2014, she stuck with one-make racing, in the Volkswagen Scirocco-R Cup. Her best finish was an eleventh place, at the Red Bull Ring. Normally, she finished further down the order, although she avoided accidents. She was 20th overall. After the end of the Scirocco-R Cup, she raced in its successor, the Audi TT Sport Cup. Her best finish was thirteenth, at the Nürburgring. 2016 saw a jump-up in power for Doreen, who raced a KTM X-Bow in the European GT4 Series. She did not race for the whole season, but she did manage a ninth place at Spa as her best result. She was 29th overall. Doreen is a former model.

Marleen Seilheimer - raced in the Volkswagen Polo Cup in 2006 and 2007, in Germany. She was 16th in the championship in 2006, and tenth in 2007. The following year, she drove a Honda Civic for the Honda Junior Team in the VLN, and entered the Nürburgring 24 Hours. Her team-mates were Christian Caron, Jorge Altmann and Daniel Ortmann. They do not appear to have finished. This was Marleen’s last notable competitive outing, but she has stayed involved in motorsport, and works in media relations for the Sauber Formula One team.

Roxanne Treuberg – young German driver racing in the Kia Lotos Cup in Eastern Europe. 2015 is her first season in circuit racing, after a long karting career. Her car was a Kia Picanto. That year, her best results have been two sixteenth places, at the Slovakiaroring and Most. Roxanne was only sixteen years old at the start of the season.

(Image from http://www.leblogauto.com/2006/03/schumachre.html)


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