Woman says Valsecchi, Bobbi are not sexist

Fri, 9 June 2023, 10:00

Jun.9 (GMM) The woman at the centre of a Formula 1 sexism scandal has played down the incident that occurred in the Spanish GP paddock last weekend.

Former drivers Davide Valsecchi and Matteo Bobbi have reportedly been suspended for at least the upcoming race in Montreal after making sexist remarks about an attractive woman who was in the background during the live Sky Italia broadcast.

“I want to tell Davide that behind him there is a nice package of updates, if he turns around,” 44-year-old Bobbi, who was a Minardi test driver, said.

Turning around, 2012 GP2 champion Valsecchi replied: “Unfortunately they told me that you can’t test them.”

The pair subsequently apologised for offending “women and Sky” – but the woman involved has now emerged to support Italians Valsecchi and Bobbi.

“When I read about their suspension I thought it was a joke,” Christine Giampaoli Zonca, a rally driver, told Corriere della Sera newspaper.

“I wasn’t offended. It was a joke. This all seems so over the top.”

In fact, she is vowing to do what she can to clear the Sky presenters’ names.

“At the next race, I’ll send a video together with Bobbi and Valsecchi so maybe this time I’ll be the one to make a couple of jokes about them.”

Zonca says she knows Valsecchi and Bobbi and finds them to be polite.

She also said another woman she was standing with in the paddock at the time “doesn’t want to talk but she too didn’t take it badly.

“When I found out about this and discovered that what I heard was true, I was sorry. They are two good commentators. It all seems so exaggerated to me.

“I know them and I wrote to them right away,” Zonca added.

Zonca insists not only that Valsecchi and Bobbi are not sexist, but that she has “never” been offended by the comments of men.

“As in all industries, there are those who make a comment that maybe can be annoying but I’ve never had any problems,” she told. “I’ve always had a good relationship with everyone.”

You may also like