Janet Guthrie Races Ahead

March 7, 1938 Janet Guthrie was born. In 1964 she was one of the first four women to qualify for NASA’s scientist astronaut program. Although she was an aerospace engineer NASA disqualified her when they changed the criteria to require a PhD. In the meantime, Guthrie had purchased a Jaguar XK 120 and began to compete in local car races. By 1972 she was racing full time and two years later she became the first woman to compete in a NASCAR Winston Cup race. In 1977 she was the first woman to compete in the Indianapolis 500.