GET TO KNOW: KATIE MILNER McLaren racing driver

 In Get to Know
International motor racing team McLaren’s 1st female racing driver chosen from it’s driver development program.

On international women’s day 2020, we bring you an exclusive interview with Katie Milner, a racing driver who is the first women to be picked from McLaren’s driver development program to race for the team in the British GT Championship. We will be following Katie through out the 2020 season, with behind scenes videos and pictures and interviews from back at the McLaren factory to race weekends at the track.

We are really excited to be working with such an up and coming female talent in the world of motorsport.

Say hi to Katie…..

Hi there ..hows your day been?
Hey! Yes, good thank you. I’ve just completed my first test day with my new team Tolman Motorsport driving the McLaren 570S GT4. 

When did you start racing? What was the 1st car you raced?
I started at the age of 12, in 2012. I started driving when I was about 6 years old around a grass field with big wooden blocks on the pedals so I could reach! I raced from 2012 until 2015 in Autograss, my first race car was a little classic mini.

What got you into racing?
My Dad, I grew up watching him fly through the forests and win Rally Championships. He gave me the bug, and I wanted to win just like him.

Tell us about the McLaren academy driver program?
I’m extremely lucky to have been chosen to be on the McLaren Driver Development Program for 2020. 18 of us were put though our paces back in October, taking part in various fitness, media and driving assessments over 2 days. I found out around 3 weeks later that I’d been offered and place to race with the program in the British GT Championship for the upcoming season. It’s a huge opportunity for me to be picked up by such a prestigious brand at this early stage of my career.

What does it feel like to be McLaren’s 1st female racing driver from the program?
It’s a very special feeling, even though I don’t like to look at the whole gender aspect of it. I’ve had so many warming comments from the staff and customers of McLaren, they love seeing a girl in the driver line up. 

“I’m extremely lucky to have been chosen to be on the McLaren Driver Development Program for 2020.”

How does it feel to be a female driver in motorsport?
It’s never really bothered me, you learn to let certain comments go over your head and at the end of the day, you’re all there to do the same job. Gender shouldn’t matter, and I really don’t think many people think it’s an issue.

What do you think about when you are racing?
The job in hand! I always just want to have fun and deliver the best performance I can give. 

Who’s been your idol?
My Dad! I’ve always looked up to him, and his achievements still amaze me. He’s taught me so much, and sacrificed a lot for me to be in the position I am now. I’m very lucky!

Where do you want to be in 10 years?
I want to still be with McLaren, and have won Championships with them. My ambition is to win Le Mans, and the best placed female in history has been 4th. I am working extremely hard to make this possible.

Can women drive F1 cars?
Of course they can! No one has been given a real opportunity to prove it yet.

What’s your everyday car?
I have a JCW Mini, it’s such a fun little car.. apart from the space when I need to fit all my race kit in it!

Have you ever experienced sexism as a female driver?
Yes, most race meetings there is at least one comment but usually on social media. You just have to learn to ignore it.

“It’s never really bothered me being a women in motorsport, you learn to let certain comments go over your head and at the end of the day, you’re all there to do the same job. Gender shouldn’t matter, and I really don’t think many people think it’s an issue.”

A big thanks to Katie and McLaren..

Look for our HEY GIRL tv interview and short films and photos from the McLaren factory and race weekend through out the year.

If you want to learn more about Katie go to her website : https://www.katiemilner.com 

See her instagram : https://www.instagram.com/katiemilner_

For the calendar and more info about the British GT series go to their website at : https://www.britishgt.com

McLaren website : http://cars.mclaren.com

McLaren Instagram  : http://www.instagram.com/mclaren_customerracing

Drive safe 🙂

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