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Shawna Robinson: Woman In Winston Cup
Part 2: Shawna's Chances For Success
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• Part 1: Who Is Shawna?
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"(Drivers) have to realize she is a racer, not a woman driver. You do not have moonshine in the trunk and women really can drive racecars. Get over it guys, she can go as fast as you!"
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• Shawna Robinson
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In the modern era of NASCAR women drivers have been few and far between. The last female to drive in a Winston Cup race was Patty Moise. Patty raced at Talladega in July of 1989. Before her you have to go back to Robin McCall who ran two races in 1982. Robin was following hot on the heels of racing pioneer Janet Guthrie who came over from the Indycar series to run some races from 1976 through 1980.

Why so few? There are a couple of reasons.

First of all, There are some very strong gender-based stereotypes in this country and too many people believe that auto racing is just not something that "ladies" do. Not only is this complete crap but I would argue that women actually could on average make better drivers than men.

Secondly, those women who do persevere through the ridicule to make it to the upper levels of racing find that motorsports is a boys-club in all the worst ways. When Shawna Robinson became the first woman to sit on the pole for a BGN race in 1994 there were some unfriendly comments made in public by some of her fellow drivers. Then during the race Shawna only made it to turn three on lap one before Mike Wallace took the air off of her spoiler and sent her to the wall in what was a questionable racing accident.

Shawna's Chances

Certainly entering the highly competitive world of NASCAR Winston Cup racing without any owners points to fall back on to help out with qualifying is not the easiest entrance into the series. Add to that an inexperienced crew, and an unsponsored team and you've got an uphill battle for any rookie driver. Winston Cup racing is difficult even in the best circumstances and nearly impossible when you are short on cash and experience.

I sincerely hope that Shawna makes it, finds a top-notch sponsor and runs for the Raybestos Rookie Of The Year award in 2002. I think that she will be good for NASCAR and a great example for girls everywhere.

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