America has had the likes of Danica Patrick, Natalie Decker and Hailie Deegan compete in NASCAR’s three series in the USA with varying degrees of success but Australia’s two series had Terri Sawyer and she had great success.
Terri Sawyer was the first winner of an AUSCAR race when she won the series debut race in 1988.
Race highlights shown Terri coming to the start/finish line in the lead as Greg East spun his #99 Commodore through the tri-oval after he got loose behind Max De Jersey.
The camera stayed on East’s car for several seconds before a commentator announced that Kim Jane taken the lead with viewers now seeing Kim Jane’s #7 in front of Sawyer’s #9.
Confusion reigned Terri made her way back ahead of Kim Jane as Mal Rose shot ahead of them both before Neil Crompton announced that the checkered flag is out and Terri Sawyer won the race.
Terri’s win ensured that she achieved the first win by a woman in the sport in the categories’ first ever race.
Her win was followed up by several strong performances in the AUSCAR series, she finished 7th in points for the 1988 season and 7th again in 1989-90.
Terri made a return to AUSCAR racing in the 1992/93 season after missing both the 1990/91 and the 1991/92 seasons, the 1992/93 season return appears to have been a limited run as she finished 27th in points.
Terri attempted two races in the NASCAR Sportsman Series in the United States, Her first attempt was the Sportsman 100 which ended in a practice crash hitting the outside wall of Turn 4.
Terri’s second attempt was the Wiscassett 150 where she qualified 13th but was in an accident on Lap 3 resulted in a 38th place finish.
Soon Terri was back in Australia and went into NASCAR driving the #1 Pontiac where she soon collected her first NASCAR win at Calder Park Thunderdome by winning the Moomba 100 on March 3 1991, becoming the first woman to win in that category too.
In the 1990/91 season, Terri finished the NASCAR season in 6th position with 645 points and $25,711 in prize money.
In 2021, the 1991 Moomba 100 was added to a DVD compilation of Calder Park Thunderdome races which will allow many race fans to see the history making race for the first time or see it for the first time since the race was held.
1988 Round 1 @ Calder Park Thunderdome (AUSCAR 200)
1991 Moomba 100 (NASCAR)
#05 – Holden Commodore
#9 – Holden Commodore
#1 – Pontiac