Related Issue: Women Racers Directory, Women in Racing, Women Racers, More Women in Racing, Race Schedules, Notable Women


DOB: August 13, 1944
Birthplace: Bushey Heath, England
Teams Hesketh, Surtees

Sportswoman, best known for her Olympics career and her motorsport racing career.

Accepting an invitation to a celebrity auto race, Galica surprised everyone with her driving talent. She eventually took up motorsport as a second career, initially racing karts, moving into Formula Two and Formula One before finding success in sports cars and trucks. Her racing career has included stints in Formula Renault and Formula Vauxhall Lotus.

Galica was taken under the wings of John Webb and Nick Whiting, who entered her in the British Shellsport International Group 8 series in 1976, driving a Surtees TS16 Formula One car. After promising showings in this domestic series, Whiting decided to enter Galica for that year's British Grand Prix, using their Surtees. This appearance was notable as the first time in 13 years that a car had been entered for a World Championship Grand Prix using the supposedly unlucky number 13; so it also proved for Galica, as she failed to qualify for the race.

For 1977 Whiting acquired a second-hand Surtees TS19 for Galica to use in the British series. The Whiting team lacked the technical expertise required to properly set the car up for each race, and Galica was often hindered by poorly adjusted machinery.[1] Arch rival Tony Trimmer was also equipped with a Surtees TS19, but his engineering background and well-funded team meant that he was the class of the field at most venues. Whiting managed to secure sponsorship from Olympus Cameras part way through the season, as prior to this the whole team had been run on a budget of only £10,000 for the entire season.[1] Despite this, Galica did manage to take third place at the Brands Hatch and second place at the Donington Park rounds, but with Trimmer winning both he took the Championship title.

Hesketh Racing's works driver Rupert Keegan had taken part in a couple of rounds of the British domestic series in 1977, and at the start of the 1978 Formula One season Hesketh offered Divina Galica the opportunity to replace him in the team's Hesketh 308E car. Galica took the Olympus sponsorship with her (replacing Hesketh's previous Penthouse magazine sponsorship), but failed to qualify the 308E for either of the 1978 World Championship season's first two races. Following the second failure she returned to the British Shellsport Championship, now a fully Formula One series. Reunited with her TS19, Galica took second place at the Zandvoort round. However, in her absence Trimmer had upgraded to an ex-works McLaren M23 car, and with the aging TS19 Galica stood little chance of being competitive. A second entry, later in the season, in her own M23 only produced a seventh place finish.

Aside from a limited number of outings in single-seater cars, Galica switched her attention to the Thundersports S2000 sports car class, taking a number of top ten finishes, and truck racing. Galica became a racing instructor with Skip Barber Racing Schools, rising to become senior vice president of Skip Barber Racing, managing both its driving school and racing series. In 2005, at the Mont-Tremblant weekend of the Skip Barber Race Series, Galica announced she was leaving Skip Barber to work for iRacing.com as a director in the company.


Six races, one podium finish

First F1 race -  1976 British Grand Prix
Last F1 race - 1978 Brazilian Grand Prix

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©1996-2018 by of Gordon Clay