I'd like to think of myself as a damn good race driver on the track and as a lady off it," Janet Guthrie told The New York Times in 1978. The previous year, when she turned 39, she made history as the first woman to compete in the Daytona 500 and the Indianapolis 500.
The University of Michigan graduate had abandoned a career as a physicist to devote herself to racing. She competed in 11 IndyCar events (top finish, fifth) and 33 NASCAR races (top finish, sixth).
Among her other honors: memberships in the International Women's Sports Hall of Fame and the International Motorsports Hall of Fame as well as a helmet and driver's suit enshrined in the Smithsonian Institution.