July 3, 2022

Margot Laffite: “Motorsport needs a female icon”. Sport

Both a pilot and a motor sports journalist for Canal Plus, Margot Laffite is also a woman committed to shifting the lines in motorsport. But as she says herself, that hasn’t always been the case. I just wanted to ride before and I didn’t see this machismo,she says. I started to realize this when I started performing.

An observation shared by the three pilots that she questions in her documentary “A pilot”, broadcast on Friday, December 24, on the channel Canal + sport, which highlights the preparation of Tatiana Calderon, Sophia Floersch and Beitske Visser; the three drivers, of the Richard Mille Racing Team engaged in the most legendary race in the world, the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Sophia Floersch is part of the 100% female crew of the Richard Mille Racing Team which competed in the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2021. © Canal +

Lack of credibility

If this allows us to see where women are in motorsport, it also highlights above all that things do not change so quickly. 20 years ago, maybe I would have liked to become a pilot, that is my job. But the means made available and the promotion of women in sport were not the same as now, says Margot Laffite.

Despite the efforts of the international automobile federation with the creation of various commissions, notably “Women in motorsport” or the setting up of events such as “Girls on track” which allows young women to try their hand at competition, we notes through the documentary that there are still very few women on the slopes. So there is still a lot of work for them to reach the top level championships. There is still a real lack of credibility, of beliefs in the capacity of women to practice this sport. We question their performance ”, observes the pilot.

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Jacques Laffite, his father and former Formula 1 driver between 1974 and 1986, winner of six Grand Prix, also admits in the documentary to have found it amusing, in his time, to see the Italian Lella Lombardi riding alongside him. My position has made him evolve in his vision of sport ”, remarks the journalist who considers that“There is no real reason why there shouldn’t be more women in motorsport. Because in terms of physics, the documentary shows that they have the capacity to become a pilot at a high level. And in the media, there is also an interest since 100% female teams have been created with the Richard Mille Racing Team or the Iron Dames team. So where is the problem ?

photo by becoming a pilot in his turn, margot laffite, has changed the vision of the sport of his father, the former winner in formula 1, jacques laffite. © canal +

By becoming a pilot in her turn, Margot Laffite, has changed the vision of the sport of her father, the former winner in Formula 1, Jacques Laffite. © Canal +

Waiting for the rare pearl

What is missing according to Margot Laffite, it is a small diamond, a talent which will make pierce a young woman. Today, we know that it is possible, but we still have a doubt because we have never seen it. We need a new female icon for little girls to believe in it. Because the final message is the following: Tell the young women who wish to do it, to give it a try, because it is possible.