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Feminism: Sex & gender discussions

Susie Wolff (Formula 1 driver) one of only 5 F1 drivers...

20 replies

MarmaladeTwatkins · 20/02/2013 13:00

Still made to pose in next to nothing

It is a DM link, in case you don't want to click on it.

Why? I don't ever recall Lewis Hamilton or Davod Coulthard posing in a pair of trunks with their crash helmet in their hand.

So Susie has made it into a notoriously male world and this is for what? To remind her that she is still an object of male desire despite her achievments? I suppose I shouldn't be surprised. F1 is a notoriously sexist industry after all.

OP posts:
MarmaladeTwatkins · 20/02/2013 13:01

Sorry, title should have said "One of only 5 female F1 drivers"

OP posts:
TeiTetua · 20/02/2013 14:07

Sorry, but why "made to pose"? Presumably if she's a legitimate subject for the paper, she'd have as much right as they would to decide how she was portrayed. So she must have done it voluntarily--which in my mind, makes it all the worse.

But to be fair, only the first photo shows lots of skin, and even then it's glamour rather than porn. Then there are several other pics of her in sensible driving gear.

ecclesvet · 20/02/2013 16:29

Agree with TT on "made to pose". Who made her? She chose to do this, don't remove her agency. If you don't like her choice, don't pretend she was forced to do this.

Lessthanaballpark · 20/02/2013 18:31

Let's not be naive. Sure no one held her down and forced her but as a famous woman she faces a whole different set of loaded choices, pressures, expectations and norms that famous men simply don't have to put up with.

Take advertising. Famous men get to stay fully clothed in nice suits while they model watches. And paid shitloads too. Women not so much.

I refuse to believe that all things being equal women are simply more willing to take their clothes off than men are.

Boredwench · 21/02/2013 12:02

Suzie Wolff has no place in F1 at all, she was retained by Williams F1 becuase her husband (Toto Wolff) was a major shareholder within the team, he's since moved onto head up Mercerdes F1 team but it's baffled people why she's remained at Williams. She's officially in a test driver role but what's telling is the fact she's been given virtually no running time at all, she doesn't do anything constructive for the team, she doesn't have the relevant experience. She's basically there as a PR exercise for Williams F1, helped no end by her husband working for them. Her racing 'qualifications' are appalling and she's hasn't achieved anything noteworthy in her entire racing career. New drivers in F1 are expected to of won multiple world championships before they're considered worthy of going into F1, Suzie hasn't won any decent races, let alone world championships. Drivers are expected to of virtually dominated all the series they race in as they aim for F1.

The standout female driver at the moment is Danica Patrick who races in the USA, she was offered a chance to test for an F1 team but ran a mile. She'd seemingly rather be a big star in the USA rather then get swallowed up as a midfield runner in F1. There's a huge step up in physical exhertion driving an F1 car and the physical strength needed is brick wall to many aspiring female drivers. Interestingly despite all the money that Danica earns (we're talking millions) she still chooses to pose in skimpy outfits for photoshoots, it's not like she needs the money or exposure (pardon the pun!).

Suzie is coming from a very affluent setting and doesn't 'need' to pose for those types of photos, imo she's doing it to keep her profile up and therefore imo I have no sympathy for her being sexualised.

Bottom line is though...Suzie has done nothing to get into F1 on merit alone, she's 'in' because of her bloke.

StickEmUp · 21/02/2013 15:54

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

vesuvia · 21/02/2013 16:26

Scenario A:
A woman in a male-dominated world approaches a misogynistic publication and insists she will only appear in their publication if she can dress and pose sexily, otherwise she's not interested and it's no deal.

Scenario B
The editor, reporter and/or photographer of a misogynistic publication "persuade and encourage" a woman in a male-dominated world to dress and pose sexily, otherwise they are not interested and it's no deal.

Which of these scenarios is likely to be closest to the truth?
My money is on scenario B.

Boredwench · 21/02/2013 16:57

I think it's more then likely to scenario B, but there's also possibly 'C'....the Williams press office contacted the DM. Unfortunately Suzie has no driving accomplishments to speak of at all, she hasn't got much to actually bring to the DM's table so to speak, no wonder they go down the 'glamour' route.

What I don't understand is why this story is running now, she's been on the teams books since the start of last season. She doesn't actively drive, the team don't trust her well enough to actually let her loose in one of the cars for real (teams are very limited on the time they get to test outside of races, it makes more sense to put the actual race drivers in), the most she gets to do is look good for photo shoots and partaking in mundane simulator work. She's been an utter failure as a 'trailblazing' woman in F1, if anything the article just reminds people who little she actually does. This is one of those situations where she got the drive because she was the woman of a major shareholder, there's literally hundreds of drivers better qualified than her who don't have a seat. It's the equivalent of Jessica Ennis being booted out the atheletics team in favour of Seb Coe's daughter (if he has one!).

Pippa Mann is a great female driver over in the the Indycar (USA) and she's virtually unknown over here.

Unfortuantely I don't think Suzie needed much persuading from the DM to go for the glamour angle, she's got sod all to talk about in respects to racing which any indepth interview would've revealed. I'm almost of the persuasion she was happy to do the shots as i've never seen her once on any F1 coverage looking less than an immaculate barbie in a racesuit. She has enough money between her and her husband to not need to do these things, imo it's solely to keep her profile up. Both her and the DM got what they wanted imo.

TeiTetua · 21/02/2013 17:11

There's also scenario A and a half, where it was the newspaper that suggested the glamour shot, but she didn't need much persuasion.

Now that people are filling in more details about Suzie Wolff, I'm understanding the picture of her with the two other drivers better. She has a lovely smile showing the pearly whites, and they're looking rather uncomfortable. Maybe they've been told to get up there and bloody well pose with her.

specialsubject · 22/02/2013 20:08

no-one forced her to pose like that. She was paid to do so. Her choice, doubt she would starve otherwise.

Never heard of her before now - but it does sound like she is only in F1 because of who she sleeps with, though...

TheSmallClanger · 22/02/2013 21:31

Susie Wolff raced in the DTM for years. She wasn't very good.

There have actually lots of female racing drivers. In the lower-ranked series and in things like touring cars and rallying, some of them are actually quite good.

I found this blog which talks about them:

LynetteScavo · 22/02/2013 21:46

Was she made to pose?

Anyway, she looks pretty amazing. I wouldn't mind posing in shorts and heels if I looked like that.

lewis hamilton

jenson button

ecclesvet · 23/02/2013 08:37
Alibabaandthe40nappies · 23/02/2013 08:46

The point is that she doesn't need to be there.

She doesn't need the money, or the exposure - but she wants it. She has tried and failed as a driver.

Yes F1 is sexist. And no the climate where a woman feels that posing for photos like this is a viable career move shouldn't exist.
But she is not some poor, exploited, struggling female driver who is mega-talented but can't get the industry to see past her breasts.

Doesmybumlookbiginthiss · 24/02/2013 15:28

Because men have five categories for women:

Women I am fking
Women I want to f
Women I dont want to fk
Women who I want to f*k but I haven't a chance of f*king
Women who are socially inappropriate to f

The racing driver slant is a mere diversion to the above...

namechangeguy · 24/02/2013 16:30

Is that all men, or just the ones you know? Where would your closest male relative place his mum on that list, for example? 'Socially inappropriate'??

Doesmybumlookbiginthiss · 24/02/2013 16:52


Good point

I guess his mother would be in the "Women I don't want to fuck" category.
Are you suggesting another category of "Off limits family members" ?

namechangeguy · 24/02/2013 17:11

Well, you have my sympathy. They do say you can't chose your family.

bran · 24/02/2013 17:17

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Frettchen · 27/02/2013 20:59

I sort of follow F1, in that I watch the races and occasionally peruse the BBC website sports pages, and it very much seems like it's not the good drivers who get on the teams these day (especially the lower ranking teams; i.e. not Red Bull, McLaren or Ferrari) it's the drivers who bring the most financial backing. Being female, at the moment, means Susie's more noticable, so might mean she has more financial backing from advertising deals etc.
See this article about pay drivers
It's an expensive sport and, unfortunately, that means it's really not very fair.

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