Heather on fire as she sets track record
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AFTER becoming the first woman racing driver to win a British Sprint Championship round for 43 years, Heather Calder is setting her sights on achieving even greater success on the track.
Not since 1970 had a female taken the chequered flag in the competition which has been dominated by men, but the Thurso-born speedster hopes it will be the first of many.
Driving a Gould GR55, she went round the track at Knockhill in 88 seconds to win the championship’s only Scottish round and trim three seconds off the previous best time which was set in 2007.
Miss Calder (23), originally from Thurso but now living in Aberdeen, has been sprint racing competitively for the past six years.
She competes against her father Colin, who has already won the championship with three rounds to go, and she dreams of following in his tyre tracks and one to day stand on top of the podium herself.
"Even though I can’t win the championship, there is still a chance I can finish second, so it would be nice if me and my dad could finish the season in a one-two," she said.
"Knockhill was the only Scottish round of the British Sprint Championship so it made it even more special for me.
Miss Calder got into kart racing when she was 12 before making the move up to sprint racing at 16 and competed in the Scottish championship before moving on to the British circuit two years ago.
She is one of two women who take part in the competition and is currently in fourth place in the championship but for her results to count, she must take part in nine of the season’s events. Having already raced in six of the races, she is committed to the final three.
Unaware at the time that she had become the first woman since 1970 to win a round of the competition, it is an accolade she is proud of.
"I was only told afterwards that it had been 43 years since a woman had won a round of the championship" she said.
"It was a good achievement and it is a big honour to have my name associated with, but hopefully I can win more rounds in the future and one day become British champion myself, as that is my main aim."
Her younger sister Louise also achieved success when she won the junior race, driving a Jedi sprint car.