Simona de Silvestro was born on September 1, 1988, in Thun, Switzerland. She was an active child who loved to keep busy, and by the time Simona was a teenager she had taken a liking to riding bicycles, playing golf, and wintertime sports like skiing and snowboarding. It was when Simona discovered racing that she put all of her athletic eggs in one basket and started pursuing a single sport aggressively.
There were many facets of racing that intrigued Simona de Silvestro. She was interested in the techniques of racing as well as the mechanics of cars. In 2001, when Simona was only in her early teens, she took up Kart racing. By 2002 she was finishing in the top 10 in the Swiss Championship race (having placed 13th at Kart-Cup Monaco and second at the Bridgestone-Cup, Switzerland).
Simona de Silvestro continued honing her kart driving skills and in her races progressively placed closer and closer to the top. In 2003 she came in second at the Torfeo Industria Parma, fifth at Wintercup Lonato and third at Primavera Lonato.
A year later, Simona de Silvestro finished 15th in the French Formula A Championship, and in 2005 she finished 21st in the Formula Renault 2000 Championship. She also took home the win at the Super Course of the Italian Racing Federation.
2006 was a breakthrough year for the young speed demon. When Simona signed with Eurointernational, she became the first woman ever to drive with that team. During her first season she was extremely successful, taking home a win at Lime Rock, six podiums and a whopping 11 top-10 wins.
Simona de Silvestro finished the 2007 racing season with two more top-10 wins. In nine out of the 10 races she participated in, Simona earned championship points.
Simona’s 2008 season was even more impressive. Her first big move came when she joined a new team, Newman Wachs Racing. When she entered the Imperial Capital Bank Atlantic Challenge in Long Beach, California with her new team, she was the only female registered for the race. That day, she earned her first win in the Champ Car developmental series. Apparently, it was a good week for female racers everywhere; only 24 hours before Simona de Silvestro’s win, Danica Patrick became the first woman to win an IndyCar race.
Simona de Silvestro will race with American Jonathan Summerton on Newman Wachs’ two-car team.