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Reema’s view: Promoting gender diversity and inclusion in motorsport

October 28, 2022

Speaking at a seminar, organised by the Catalan Motorsport Federation’s Inclusion Commission, Reema reflected on her journey to date and how motor racing can become a more diverse and inclusive sport.

Q: In the International GT Open’s Barcelona finale, there are 51 drivers, yet there is only one woman competing. Why do we see such a lack of women in this environment?

“In general, the sport is opening up and more opportunities are becoming available, but still not enough. It’s also quite intimidating coming into the sport. It took a lot for me to surpass my own fears and insecurities but seeing these women here showcasing the different facets – driver, PR, Team Manager and Race Director – gives women a chance and the hope to aspire to be in these positions. If you don’t know that there is an opportunity, you won’t go for it, so we need to highlight these opportunities.I would love to see more women on the grid in the future."


Q: What got you into motorsport and pushed you to create your own racing team?

“The biggest thing was self-belief. I grew up in Saudi Arabia and I didn’t have a background in motorsport, or any exposure to motorsport. It was watching the LeMans 24 Hours that made me realise that there was a possibility for me to enter at a later age to learn and be successful. That was enough for me to do a track day and as soon as I got in the car, that was it for me. I was hooked. I was hungry to learn.

“I started late with no experience, so I knew that it was going to be an uphill battle. I was lucky to have support and positive reinforcement from men and women alike. Many reached out for advice inquiring how they could break into the sport as well. This interest is what propelled me to start Theeba Motorsport. Through the team I want to create opportunities and give people a platform to learn and grow. You can’t win a race on your own – you win it with the right support and team.”

Q: There is a conversation about giving women trophies, simply for being women. Is it ok to promote women in motorsport, or are we diluting your involvement by giving trophies, regardless of the results?

“I don’t consider these opinions. You earn respect by showing results, showing dedication, and by showing your success and passion. I prefer to do the talking on track.”

Q: Such as in W Series, should men and women be separated to see how women progress on their own and then promote them? What are the positives and negatives of this?

"W Series gave opportunities and showcased women, their talent, and their abilities, but motorsport has always been an inclusive sport. I think there are ways in which we can include women a little bit better, it’s about having more opportunities, more mentorship programs, and more initiatives to promote women in all areas of the sport.

By shedding light on achievements like theIron Dames winning the 24 Hours of Spa. It’ll show that we don’t need to completely segregate the sport.”

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