International Women’s Day today (8 March) is the perfect opportunity to unveil the all-female scrutineering team assembled by MotorSport Vision Racing (MSVR) for the upcoming Aston Martin Owners’ Club (AMOC) event at Donington Park on Saturday 20 April.
The team will be checking vehicles throughout the day, led by Sue Bateman, whose idea it was to put the group together. Sue started scrutineering with superkarts in 1999, is now a fully certified Motorsport UK scrutineer and is in great demand.
“Once I was a full scrutineer I decided to add cars to my license as I still had an interest in car racing. This was hard in the early 2000s, as the lads didn’t want to train women. This attitude made me more determined and I’m still here today doing more and more motorsport. The path hasn’t been easy but I have earned the respect of a lot of officials and now I’m offered so many events that there aren’t enough weekends!” she said.
Sue and MSVR Chief Scrutineer Nigel Thorne chatted last year about the increasing number of female scrutineers in motorsport, and the idea was born! Sue has pulled together a group of eight women from across the UK, including two trainees, who will work together at the AMOC meeting – and Sue admits she’s expecting a few surprised faces!
“As far as I’m aware, this has never been done before, but it seemed like such a fantastic opportunity with more and more women becoming scrutineers. You hear a lot about female drivers and marshals but not scrutineers so we’ll be raising their profile a bit,” said Sue.
Her team will include university student Chloe Jones, who assisted scrutineers at the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge, road rally competitor Rebecca Richards, former junior kart and Formula Ford driver Evelyn MacRitchie, former rally competitor and team manager Anna McColl and Sue Jeffery.
Scrutineers are all volunteers who give their time for the love of motorsport. Last year MSVR used around 60 scrutineers for its meetings, who travelled the length and breadth of the country to different venues for race meetings.
Simon Gnana-Pragasam, MSVR Assistant Race Operations Manager, said: “MSVR’s race meetings simply couldn’t happen without our loyal army of volunteers, and we are excited to be able to assemble this all-female scrutineering team for the first time. Female participation in motorsport is undoubtedly on the rise, and there is a whole host of critical roles women can play in the sport including scrutineering, marshalling, timekeeping and medical cover to name just a few. We would encourage anyone who is interested in getting involved to get in touch!”
The Aston Martin Owners’ Club Championships meeting on Saturday 20 April showcases cars from the marque’s illustrious past, with support races featuring other historic and modern-day classics. For full details, click here.