A VISIT FROM MARIA COFER

WHAT OUR ATHENIANS ARE SAYING

CHARLOTTE’S TAKE-AWAY:

When Maria recalled her different experiences being part of the racing industry, she gave helpful insight and advice not only about the racing industry, but also for all careers. I learned that being a woman or a girl is an advantage in the racing industry and it is important to take advantage of it in order to successfully market yourself as a racer. This taught me that it is important to embrace being a woman and it can be used as a tool in the working field. In addition, she also expressed that having a good relationship with your team is important in the racing industry.  This helped me realize the significance of having a close relationship with team members in the work field in order to succeed in life. Furthermore, Maria says it is important to adapt and stay on your feet and I found this helpful because events in life do not always go as planned which is why it is important to be able to adjust to new settings.

maria coffer

ANAYA’S TAKE-AWAY:

“You all put your helmets on the same way.”  This quote from Ms. Cofer’s speech really  resonated with me because as girls, we feel like playing the blame card on our gender in certain situations.  Similarly, people also tend to think  that we are less competent, due to stereotypical beliefs.  However, the truth is that we are all equal, and being a girl is definitely not a disadvantage.  In fact, as Ms. Cofer continued to explain, it is actually an advantage, as it brings more attention to you and your achievements.  Having this spotlight as you climb the male-dominated ladder, is always a good thing.  Therefore, we should never feel like it would be better if we were a boy or that boys have it better than us.

MEHER’S TAKE-AWAY:

Professional racecar driver Maria Cofer came to Athena Racing 2021 FABcamp to speak with us about her career in driving. One of things she talked about the most was how different conditions affect the racing and how to properly turn a corner on the track. The key tip I got from Maria’s segment was that the car can only do three things (brake, accelerate, and turn), and you can only do two of those things to turn a corner on the track. Another thing Maria told us was how important it is to talk and figure things out with your team. I like how she emphasized that not only is racing about you and your speed, but it’s also about the car and how well you work with your team of mechanics and engineers. Maria also mentioned bonding activities with her team and how important it is to have fun and work together to have a successful race. I learned so much about racing from Maria Cofer’s session and I’m so glad she was one of our guest speakers!

meher athena racing student

MELISSA’S TAKE-AWAY:

My biggest take-away from Maria Cofer was the many aspects that you have to consider in a race track. It interested me how something as simple as the temperature could affect someone’s position in a race and that you had to adjust to that. Sure if it was raining on the track it made sense, but the location itself was something you had to think about before starting a race. It really gave me something to think about when it came to racing. It made me realize that racing wasn’t as simple as it sounded and that the engineering of the car had a lot to play in the race when it came to location, time, and weather.

MIHIKA’S TAKE-AWAY:

From Maria Cofer, I learned about the importance of precision and details as well as teamwork. I learned that the small things in a car or on a track can make huge differences while driving. For example, I learned that different weather conditions can make huge impacts on the track and driving conditions, so you have to be aware of that. Additionally, I learned about how it is extremely important for a team to get along and bond together to keep everything running smoothly.

maria coffer

TANISI’S TAKE-AWAY:

My favorite insight that I learned from Ms. Maria Cofer is that it doesn’t matter if you are a girl or boy, because you are doing your job that you love and want to do. In other words, I learned that your gender cannot stop you from making you want to do something, if you love something, you do it. Another thing I learned is to take a chance. Instead of thinking, “I can’t do it,” ask yourself, “Why not?” “Why can I not do it?” “What is stopping me?” In conclusion, some of the things that I learned from Ms. Cofer were that my gender does not define who I want to and can be, and that if I really want to do something, I just have to put my mind to it and ask myself, “Why not?”

SURABHI’S TAKE-AWAY:

My takeaway messages from Maria Cofer are the following. Don’t limit yourself. You can do anything you want if you believe that you can. Another thing I learned is that you need to be all in or all out. If you are all in you will give your best focus and reach your goal, and if you are all out you will spend your time in another place which has more value to you. My favorite take away message from her is that if you have an end goal and you are passionate about it and have your values straight you are unstoppable. Things will not happen exactly as you plan, but you will get to your main goal one way or another. The funniest thing that I learned is about holding your pee in, to increase performance! And those are the takeaway messages from Maria Cofer.

TANVI’S TAKE-AWAY:

22-year-old Maria Cofer is a professional race car driver and was a guest speaker at Athena Racing FABcamp. She said that one of the big things most people ask is whether as a woman if she was treated differently than others, but she says that she loves the sport as much as anyone else can. She also mentioned that she makes sure not to use her gender as an advantage when being asked about her racing. Maria explained how, when going through a challenging time on the track, it’s easy to say that she’s a girl and treated differently, even though it’s not always the case. I like how Maria focuses on her own racing, instead of worrying about what others might think or say about her. Another thing I learned about racing from Maria Cofer was how different tracks affect the racing and how different weather affects the tracks as well. I never realized how different one track could feel depending on the weather, and Maria explained how the track changes also depending on where it’s located.