Most parents worry about their children getting their driver’s licence and driving unsupervised, but spare a thought for Renee Gracie’s folks. They will see their daughter behind the wheel of a Porsche race car as soon as she turns 18 in January. Is this what you fear most for your kids, a licence to drive?
Renee will be Australia’s first woman to race in the Porsche Carrera Cup and many in the motorsport world see her as a likely candidate to become Australia’s equivalent of Danica Patrick, the famous and gorgeous former Indycar and now NASCAR racer. Renee has limited motorsport experience to date, but has risen up the ranks of the karting world and turned enough heads to gain the opportunity to live her dream.
Only three years ago, Renee first experienced the thrill of racing when her father took her to a local hire kart track. She was a natural driver and quickly started to beat Dad. Renee has since competed in senior level karting and will now compete in the first race of the Porsche Carrera Cup in Adelaide in February.
Renee’s nickname is ‘Devil Princess’ … a devil on the track and a princess off it. And surprise, surprise; Renee’s idol is none other than Danica Patrick who is a household name throughout the USA.
Renee’s Porsche is emblazoned in pink and black and looks like every teenage girl’s dream car. Matching race gear and helmet complement her look. This is one 18 year old who is clearly ambitious, competitive and driven. And stylish too!
However let’s not expect too much from Renee in her first year and hope that she stays safe. It’s tough enough to drive on local streets in your first year behind the wheel – let alone around race tracks that will be unfamiliar to her and with many experienced male racers racing bumper to bumper at over 200 km/h.
“My goal this year is to learn the tracks and finish races,” says Renee. “I’m under no illusions how tough the competition is and the worst thing I can do is think I’m at a level to compete against the professionals.
“I am quite literally going to take it lap by lap and get the experience. Then I’ll think about challenging for a place on the podium.”
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