This edition of Film Vault introduces us to racer Beryl Swain, who so upset the Isle of Man TT guard that her license was revoked.
Ah, 1960s Britain, when blatant sexism was totally OK. Ugh.
This edition of Film Vault takes us to 1962 and introduces us to racer Beryl Swain over whom a newsreel laments: “slowly but surely, women – the weaker sex – are muscling in on man’s domain.”
The condescension and borderline disdain for Swain’s racing is almost palpable. But the newsreel wasn’t the only to have a problem with her racing ambitions.
Swain competed in the Isle of Man TT in 1962 and so threatened the male-dominated old guard that they thereafter changed the rules to prevent her from competing again. Officials implemented a minimum weight limit that Swain could not meet and her international racing license was promptly revoked, effectively ending her career.
Swain went on to have a successful professional career, and women would not get a chance to race at the TT for more than a decade.
Swain has been cited by current racer Jenny Tinmouth as an inspiration. You can read more about Swain on this archived BBC page.