The pioneer Maria Teresa de Filippis has died at the age of 89, according to has advanced Autosprint. The pilot neapolitan entered the Formula 1 history by becoming the first woman to compete in a Grand Prize, in the season 1958. What he did in the Monaco GP of that year, at the wheel of a Maserati 250F with which it had previously competed (and won the title) Juan Manuel Fangio 1957.
The biggest sporting milestone of the Italian was a tenth place he achieved in his second participation, the GP of Belgium in 1958. At Spa-Francorchamps, De Filippis managed to get out in 19th place for back up to the tenth, last, and two laps behind the winner. The campaign even tried to run the GP of Portugal, in Oporto, and of Italy, at Monza, but two failures prevented him from finishing.
In 1959 he returned to try again at the wheel of a Porsche of the computer of your friend Jean Behra, again in the GP in the Principality, but as in the previous year was left out. It was precisely the death of Behra, in a race sportscar in the circuit German AVUS, which made him leave the competition.
Be the first woman in the competition earned him a lot of criticism, the vast majority of machismo. At the GP of France of 1958 banned to compete because the race director believed that “the only helmet that would use a woman is one of the barber”. Others, however, praised his honor. Is the case’s very own Juan Manuel Fangio, who praised his character, although he warned that I was taking too many risks. De Filippis was the first of the six women who, in the history of Formula 1, have played at least one practice session at a Grand Prix: after she was Lella Lombardi (the first grade), Divina Galica, Desire Wilson, Giovanna Amati and recently Susie Wolff.