SPEEDWAY, Ind. (WISH) — History was made at Indianapolis Motor Speedway last weekend as the first-ever female driver-owner duo qualified for the greatest spectacle in racing.
Over a century of rich racing tradition embraced a new beginning and wrote a new chapter this month.
“Ladies, qualifying weekend. Let’s go,” said Beth Paretta, owner of Paretta Autosport.
The first-ever female led, female driven, female dominated team held their breath in the final seconds of bump day, and as the No. 16 Chevy found its way into the show, their tears fell as a dream years, generations even, in the making became a reality.
“They just believed the idea mattered and they believed in us and here we are…this is a bunch of women who have been working very very hard for years,” said Paretta. “I mean working together for the past four months but working for years and years to acquire the skills and the experience to get the nod to be on the team.”
“This journey will inspire many young girl to just be whatever they want be,” said IndyCar driver Simona de Silvestro. “Just being in this position and being the driver of this team and I think it’s a special feeling.”
Since January, when Roger Penske announced he was backing the bid of a brand new team named, Paretta Autosport. Team owner, Beth Paretta has carefully chosen her crew members to not only put a competitive car in the biggest race in the world, but to shatter a few glass ceilings in the world of motorsports.
“Looking at the girls changing the tires ridiculously fast and using the opportunity they were given and they’re showing what they’re capable of, it’s a special movement,” said De Silvestro.
“If you see us, you can be us. We didn’t do anything crazy to get here, we’re hard working, we’re here to prove that you can do whatever you want to do,” said Madison Conrad, rear tire changer and mechanic for Paretta Autosport. “The sky’s the limit, right?”
For Paretta, Sunday’s Indy 500 will be a winner with or without earning a visit to Victory Lane. And it certainly won’t be their last.