Maria Teresa de Filippis, Italian woman racing drive, Died at 89


Maria Teresa de Filippis was born on November 11, 1926, in Naples, Italy and died on January 8, 2016.

She was an Italian racing driver.

She was noted as being the first woman to race in Formula One.

Maria has taken part in five World Championship Grands Prix, debuting on 18 May 1958, but scored no championship points.

She was mostly unsuccessful in her Formula One racing career.

Maria Teresa de Filippis won races in other series and is remembered as a pioneer in the sport.

She started racing at the age of 22.

Two of her brothers told her that she would not be able to go very fast, goading her and making a bet that she would be slow.

Maria won her first race, driving a Fiat 500 on a 10 km drive between Salerno and Cava de’ Tirreni.

De Filippis went on to drive in the Italian sports car championship, finishing second in the 1954 season.

After seeing her potential, Maserati brought her in as the works driver.

She has taken part in various motor racing events, including hill climbing and endurance racing, before being given the chance to drive in Formula One.

Maria Teresa finished second in a sports car race supporting the 1956 Naples Grand Prix, driving a Maserati 200S.

She was a pioneer in motor racing, a sport dominated by men, and no woman would race in Formula One for a further 15 years.

Her fellow Italian Lella Lombardi completed between 1974 and 1976 and remains the only female to have finished a Formula One race in a point-scoring position.

Four other females have tried to compete in the sport, most recently Giovanna Amati in 1992.

Maria Teresa de Filippis passed away at 89 yrs old.