Fabienne Lanz is one of the true and arguably the best lady racing drivers in South African racing at the moment. She has a vision to go to the top in Motorsport and strives to be the best in all Motorsport categories she competes in. She is a breath of fresh air to the sport and loves to work with people.
Fabienne started her racing career at the age of 9 and has worked her way through the ranks to become one of the best female Kart Racing Drivers in South Africa. She is currently making her mark in Italian Kart racing. She comes from a racing heritage as her father is a former Saloon car champion, Peter Lanz. Racing is a predominately male sport and Fabienne is hoping that competition and winning races will see more lady racers join and succeed in the sport. Her style is smooth and precise and Fabienne loves speed and adrenalin. She will never let a challenge go without a fight.
Fabienne currently races high performance karts and is looking to further her career in Single Seaters and at a later stage to a Production Saloon Series. She wants to spread her wings and eventually end up in the World Class, prestigious Formula 1 or International Touring Cars.
Some of her outstanding performances to date are:
As a junior driver in 2003, she competed at 3 events in Florida, USA where she won 2 out of the 3 events and finished 2nd in the third. She finished 4th overall in the South African Rotax Junior Max Championship in the same year.
This rising star finished 2nd overall in the 2004 Rotax Max Challenge series in South Africa and won the Northern Regions championship in the same year. She repeated this success in 2008 in the Vortex Super Rok Series whilst racing in 2 categories at the same time at some events. She has proven she is physically capable to race these high g-force, high speed machines.
In 2005, she became the first lady racer to qualify for the Grand Finals at the Rotax World Grand Final in Lanzarote, Spain.
In 2007, Fabienne made history as she finished 5th at the 2007 Vortex Super Rok World Grand Final in Lonato, Italy, and became the first lady racer to finish on the podium at a Rok Final event. She then received her South African Protea colours for her outstanding performances.
Fabienne’s 2nd place finish in the South African Championship offered her a ticket to the 2008 Vortex Super Rok Grand Final, held at Lonato Italy once again. Fabienne was less fortunate this time as she got caught up in accidents during the heats. None the less, Fabienne made it to the final 34 out of 70 drivers. She started 19th on the grid for the final and ended 13th after a long, hard battle. She was the first lady finisher in this category.
In 2009, she finished top notch again with a whopping 4th place in the Vortex Super Rok category. She qualified as top South African to represent South Africa at the Vortex Super Rok Grand Final again. Same as every year, it was at Lonato, Italy in October. Fabienne was on top form as she topped the time sheets, often fastest around the track. She was amongst the top runners throughout the event; unfortunately a fuel pump failure dropped her down the ranks for the Final. Starting from the back of the grid, she finished as top South African in 14th position.
She also competed at the Bridgestone European Cup Final at Lonato, Italy in the Vortex Super Rok category where she showed the way around the track by leading ¾ of the Pre-Final and then went on to win the Pre-Final. She finished 5th in the Final.
End of 2009, Fabienne has made history once again as she became the first lady to qualify on pole position at the Dubai Kartdrome in the Nivea for Men 24hr Endurance series. Fabienne also added herself once again to the history books when she became the first lady to qualify on pole at the COSE 24hr Endurance race in Italy March 2010.
This “Iron Lady” as some call her, has had a few critical accidents in her racing career, but she does not let that get her down as she is determined to come out on top.
While Fabienne is not in her racing machine she preps her racing machine for the next race, works on her profile and brand, coaches other karters and makes herself available to help others and organizations, such as the WIM (Women in Motorsport) Panel. She teaches all levels of karters from beginners through to experienced drivers.
In 2009, Fabienne was invited to help a karter from the SAKRA (South African Kart Racing Academy). This academy is for all children of any gender or race. They run the children who are accepted into the academy to participate in local kart racing, and hopefully to one day graduate to higher levels. Fabienne feels that she needs to give back wherever she can.
Fabienne’s profile is on the ascendancy and she is getting interviewed more frequently and she appears on TV with regularly frequency.
In February 2009, Fabienne was interviewed by SABC 2 TV Sport for their Syadladla programme. They interviewed on her as a female in a predominantly male sport; on her achievements, struggles, horrid accidents, why she is so crazy about karting and how do others get into the sport. The programme was quite a success, sponsor partners got about 15 minutes of exposure on this particular programme.
She was a guest on YOTV’s Saturday morning Big Breakfast show on the 29th of August this year. August is Women’s month there was a lot of focus on women in Motorsport. Fabienne had to do a little hash brown cooking and played foosball against fellow racing colleague, Clare Vale. Apparently 10,000,000 viewers watch this programme.
Fabienne appeared in the “On the Track Racing” magazine, in the June / July 2009 issue. The article was about Fabienne the person and Fabienne the lady racer. She featured in the November issue of Heels and Wheels magazine. It is great advertising for her sponsor partners as they get great exposure.
In between the training and public showings, Fabienne gives the media arena some attention. Fabienne has developed a good relationship with reporters at the Midrand Reporter News Paper (a local News Paper where she lives) which publishes all of her race reports and results. She is also making more personal contacts with “The Business Day” and “The Star”.
Fabienne sends out her press releases to several websites who in turn publish it on their websites such as the WIM (Women in Motorsport) website, MSA(Motorsport South Africa) website, Driver Data Base(www.driverdb.com/drivers/26719/), to mention but a few. She keeps her fans updated on Facebook, Twitter and social media blogs.
Fabienne has her own website, www.fabienneracing.com The website is intended to give the enthusiast and/or fan some background on Fabienne, pictures of her in action as well as portrait pictures. It has all the latest news so that the viewer is up to date with the happenings in Fabienne’s racing career.
Fabienne’s determination, consistent and ongoing success as a female competitor in a predominantly male sport is both unique and exciting. Combined with her young but rapidly growing marketing network, she provides a sponsor with proven avenues of exposure and a solid platform for the marketing and promotion of their brand to the public.