The first Polish elimination round in the „The Girls On Track – Karting Challenge”, organized by FIA, took place in the 26 27 of May, right by Gemini Park in Tychy. The local organizers included the Polish Automobile and Motorcycle Association, Automobilklub Ziemi Tyskiej (Tychy Automobile Club), and Gemini Park Tychy. Gosia Rdest and Rafał Sonik became the ambassadors of the project.
The Girls on Track is a brand new FIA project designed to discover new riding talents among girls and secure careers in motorsport for women. The long-term goal is to create an environment that will facilitate women’s participation at all levels of motorsport. Rafał Sonik, the best Polish quad racer, a Dakar winner and a six-time FIM World Cup winner, serves as an ambassador in the national round of the project.
The participation is free of charge and open to all girls age 13-18, both those with and without a sports license. First three winners of the elimination round will take part in the European Final in 2019, and selected six of that competition will attend the FIA Drivers Training Camps.
The Minister of Sport and Tourism, Witold Bańka, provided honorary patronage for the national eliminations.
While the project is mainly targeting girls and young women at the age 13-18, it also proved to be popular among boys and younger girls. The youngest competitor was a girl of 11 years. Some contestants traveled a long distance to sit behind a kart wheel, coming from places like Gdynia or Sanok. There were over 100 rides down the special karting slalom which was set up for the elimination round. The contestants soon realized that fear made things looked twice as bad as they were and a karting slalom was really a piece of cake. A few minutes of rest was enough hop back behind the wheel.
Since the participants did very well, the jury decided that, in addition to three winners, they would also choose one more participant on Saturday and one more on Sunday. Among the finalists were Sara Kałuzińska from Gdynia, Marcelina Czepiel from Szczyrzyc, Aleksandra Buziewicz from Sanok, Alicja Gaj from Częstochowa, Joanna Piwowarek from Piaseczno, Natalia Lelek from Zgłobień, Kinga Wójcik from Wielogóra and Agnieszka Wysogląd from Pisarzowice. This fall, all finalists will participate in the expert training led by Gosia Rdest – one of the fastest Polish female racers in the international racing arena.
The whole project consists of several stages. National eliminations take place in 2018 in eight European countries (Poland, Belgium, Finland, Holland, Germany, Portugal, Slovakia, and Sweden).
The first and the last Polish elimination stage will take place on August 11 and 12, 2018, in Rzeszów. More information and registration forms can be found on www.GirlsOnTrack.pl.