Barbie driver back after horrific road crash July 7, 2003 (Toronto, Canada): Race driver Ashley Taws of Newmarket, Ontario, is set to return to competition just seven months after suffering terrible injuries in a traffic accident. The ...
Barbie driver back after horrific road crash
July 7, 2003 (Toronto, Canada): Race driver Ashley Taws of Newmarket, Ontario, is set to return to competition just seven months after suffering terrible injuries in a traffic accident. The nineteen-year-old driver of the "Be Anything With Barbie" car will race at the Toronto Indy, July 11-13.
The remarkable comeback is the result of a tremendous effort on the part of the popular young racer. A passenger in a car that was involved in a head-on collision, December 7, Taws was airlifted from the scene with severe injuries including a crushed aortal artery and broken spine. She spent eight weeks in hospital amid concern she might never walk again.
Fortunately, Taws recovered well and, upon release from hospital, began rehabilitation and a rigorous fitness programme. She wanted to race as soon as possible, but was absolutely determined not to miss the Toronto Indy. After a surgery in May, she was told it was not possible to race before August. Taws did not give up, however, and did everything possible to achieve her goal.
Incredibly, she did it. With medical clearance in hand, Taws gathered her AIM Autosport crew for a couple of quiet test sessions late last week. Everything went well and with much excitement, Taws added her name to the entry list for the upcoming race.
"I'm so happy to be able to race again," she said. "It felt great to go out and do laps last week and I can't wait to go racing."
Taws will participate in some pre-race festivities including Indy Downtown, Tuesday from 11:00am to 2:00pm in the TD Centre Courtyard, but her official return to competition commences with a qualifying session on Friday at 12:45pm. Another session is scheduled at 6:45pm Saturday and a twenty-lap race is set for 3:45pm Sunday, immediately following the Champ Car World Series race.
Last year, Taws garnered much attention when she was the fastest qualifier and became the first woman in the histories of both the Canadian Formula Ford Championship and the Toronto Indy to start a race from pole position.
She claimed three podium (top-three) finishes over the course of the eight-race 2002 series, had a best result of second, set a fastest race lap and finished tied on points for third place in the championship and rookie of the year. Furthermore, she was recently voted 'Up & Coming Road Racer of the Year' by readers of Inside Track Motorsport News.