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Woman Spotlight Wednesday: Emely De Heus

Written by Sophie Harvey, Edited by Vyas Ponnuri

Women have played an influential role throughout the history of motor racing. Many have taken to the wheels of motorsport machines, while numerous figures have worked tirelessly on the sidelines in various roles, shaping the racing world to the present day. Woman Spotlight Wednesday aims to take a look at the tales of these superwomen, who have surpassed various hurdles to reach where they are today.

For this week’s article, we’re delving into the path of a promising Dutch star, Emely De Heus. From W Series to F1 Academy, this 21-year-old’s career has been a rollercoaster so far. Now sponsored by Red Bull and Ford, she’s embarked on a season full of fresh challenges.

De Heus has recently been racing in Eurocup-3, as part of a dual campaign; Image Credit - Eurocup-3

Born in Mijnsheerenland, Netherlands, De Heus originates from racing roots — daughter of Bert De Heus, veteran of the 24H Endurance Championship and an avid GT racer. Her family also operate De Heus Tractors, supplying construction and agricultural machinery.

Like most motorsport hopefuls, she began her career in karts. After consecutively competing in both the 2019 and 2020 Rotax Max Challenge International Trophy, De Heus went on to win the Dutch WinterCup. Later that year, she also came P4 in the Dutch Rotax Max Senior National Championship, amassing an impressive total of 239 points.

Her first taste of single-seaters came in the form of F4 Spain, partnering MP Motorsport for every round in 2021. Once 2022 arrived, the young Dutch driver was quick to participate in W Series testing — after successful sessions in Arizona and Barcelona, she secured a full-time seat. Joining experienced driver Beitske Visser, the two formulated Sirin Racing’s all-Dutch lineup for the season.

She achieved a best result of P10 on debut, competing at the Miami International Autodrome.

When W Series came to a dramatic end, De Heus was left to look for new opportunities. As a young and exciting new talent, the announcement of F1 Academy seemed meant to be.

Restoring her partnership with Dutch outfit, MP Motorsport, it was announced that De Heus would partner Emirati duo Hamda and Amna Al Qubaisi. It didn’t take her long to get up to speed, converting pole to win in an action-packed race in Barcelona, and taking a home-race podium in Zandvoort.

Her incredible pole to win dash in Barcelona last year must have been a career highlight for De Heus; Image Credit - F1 Academy

With one win under her belt, 2023 saw the Dutch driver finish her inaugural season in P9, amassing a total of 87 points. Her efforts proved vital in the team’s championship too, MP Motorsport settling for P2 after narrowly missing out on the title — just 8 points away from PREMA Racing’s impressive tally.

In February, F1 Academy announced the return of the MP Motorsport trio for their second season in the series — this time supported by Red Bull. De Heus is specifically sponsored by Red Bull and Ford, maximising her support network and amplifying her presence in a striking blue livery.

Whilst the first two rounds of the season in Jeddah and Miami weren’t quite what De Heus would have hoped for, a double-points outing in Barcelona is a positive sign that things are on the up. 

Joined here by Liam Lawson and Sergio Perez, De Heus and her teammates are all part of Red Bull’s talent pool; Image Credit - F1 Academy

Alongside her F1 Academy pursuits, she’s also made her Eurocup-3 debut to set down some additional track time. With consistent top-fifteen finishes, De Heus has been a mighty mover through the field and hopefully, she’ll be rising higher in the coming rounds.

If one thing is for sure, this promising young driver is only just getting started. If you want to watch Emely De Heus and her rivals racing, both Eurocup-3 and F1 Academy are streamed LIVE on their respective YouTube channels. Don’t miss out, she’s one to watch!


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