Susie Wolff decides to hang up her helmet
‘I dared to be different, I want to inspire others to do the same’
OBAN’S Susie Wolff has said it is time to explore new challenges following her shock decision last week to quit Formula 1.
Susie, 32, was appointed development driver for Williams F1 in 2012, after racing for seven years in the German Touring Car Championships. She was promoted to official test driver in 2015.
First woman This culminated in her driving at the British and German Grand Prix alongside team mate Felipe Massa, becoming the first woman driver to do so since 1992.
Williams deputy team principal Claire Williams said: ‘It has been a pleasure to work with Susie over the years and see her develop as a driver within the team.
‘Her feedback and knowledge of the car has been an important part of our recent development and we will be sorry to see her go.
Susie will take part in what will be her last race on November 20 and 21 for the Race of Champions in London’s Olympic stadium, where she will race for Scotland with former F1 driver and BBC F1 commentator David Coulthard.
Writing for the Huffington Post, the Obanite, who now lives in Switzerland with her husband Toto Wolff, who is head of world champion Mercedes F1 team, said: ‘My gut feeling tells me it is time to move on. It’s time to explore new challenges and push myself in new environments.
‘As a sports person it is always difficult to know when to stop, but for me, this journey has come to an end.’
Susie started racing karts at the age of eight with the encouragement of her family, who own motorcycle business Stoddarts of Oban.
She continued: ‘I was brought up by brilliant parents who never once made me think motor sport was rather for boys, that I was choosing a path unusual for a girl.
‘They instilled in me the belief that I could achieve anything if I was determined and worked hard enough.’
Susie says she wants to try to help the next generation of women make it in motorsport.
‘I want to give something back,’ she said, as she prepares to link up with the Motor Sports Association, the UK motorsport authority.
‘ We will launch a new initiative aimed at celebrating the woman succeeding in motorsport on and off the track now, plus highlighting to the next generation that motorsport is an option for them.
‘I dared to be different, I want to inspire others to do the same.’
OFF TO THE RACES: Susie standing next to her Williams F1 racing car.
FAMILY: Susie (second from the right), with her mum Sally, brother
David and dad John.