Mira Erda aims to challenge male bastion
Ever since she started karting at a tender age of nine, Mira Erda has been steadily establishing herself in the domestic motor racing scene.
The Vadodara-based teen was awarded the Best Rookie in her maiden season in the National Karting Championship in 2010, before going on to compete in her first international kart race in Malaysia.
More recently, she stepped up into single-seaters as she continues to climb the junior racing series ladder. The 17-year-old finished eighth overall in JK Tyre’s LGB F4 series last season, beating 12 other drivers to the Rookie Championship.
2017 is arguably the most important year for Erda as she has joined Euro JK, one of India’s two premier single-seater championships.
To prepare herself - both mentally and physically - for the fastest cars she’s ever driven, Erda tested a similar Formula BMW car at Malaysia’s Sepang International Circuit under the guidance of Indian sportscar ace Armaan Ebrahim.
“I wanted to do Formula BMW for 7 years, when I was in karting,” Erda told Motorsport.com. “I've been waiting to drive this car.
“LGB has been a really good experience for me because before getting into this [Euro JK] we need proper experience of how to handle these cars and how to turn.
“When I became the Rookie Champion [last year] I got the confidence to do this.
"Then I went to Malaysia got the training and testing session which brought a lot more idea about how these cars work. I drove this Formula BMW with sequential gears, which was really good.
"Armaan was there. He would try and make sure that I keep improving every lap and get as much knowledge as possible."
Erda’s first weekend in Euro KL was compromised by an alternator issue, but the progress she made over the course of the weekend gave a glimpse of what’s in store in coming rounds.
However, the 17-year-old doesn’t want to set any high targets for herself and is instead focused on gaining experience of racing a proper single-seater car with wings.
“I just want to learn and keep improving. Winning is not on my mind right now. But if I get a chance in the last race I might target for the podium, but till then it’s all about learning.
Asked about her future, Erda said she has plenty of options on the table - including staying in Euro JK for another season, competing in the newly-launched F4 South East Asia championship or racing in the UK.
One championship for male and female drivers
While some female racers are of the opinion that separate championships should be held for both sexes, Erda, on the other hand, would rather compete against males in the same machinery.
“Racing with male drivers is more more preferable because they are much more aggressive whereas we females are not more aggressive together,” she said. “I can get more much aggressive with male drivers whenever I race. So I would prefer racing with males than only with females.
“If we have a separate championships [for females] then its no of use. We will keep fighting between ourselves and won’t be able to improve.”
Chennai MRF F1600: Reddy signs off weekend with double win
Passion for motorsport taking Arya Singh to greater heights