Janet Guthrie documentary 'Qualified' airs on ESPN. Director Jenna Ricker joins the show.

Janet Guthrie documentary 'Qualified' airs on ESPN. Director Jenna Ricker joins the show.

Blog > The Dan Dakich Show > Janet Guthrie documentary 'Qualified' airs on ESPN. Director Jenna Ricker joins the show.

Janet Guthrie documentary 'Qualified' airs on ESPN. Director Jenna Ricker joins the show.

Bob Harmeyer | Archive Photos | Getty Images


The 30 for 30 documentary 'Qualified' aired Tuesday night on ESPN.  The documentary talked about Janet Guthrie who was the first woman to ever race in the Indianapolis 500.  She broke many barriers in the racing world in IndyCar and NASCAR and the male-dominated sport did not welcome her originally with open arms.  'Qualified' director Jenna Ricker joins the show to talk to Greg Rakestraw who is filling in for DD.

How did this idea for a project come into your mind?

"About ten years ago  I was invited to come to my first Indianapolis 500.  Everyone that's ever been to one knows its a totally different experience than watching it on television.  It's just epic and I was completely in love with it and have been back every year.  It's always so exciting and I was there this Sunday.  So a few years ago, I'm embarassed to say only a few years ago.  I asked one of my producers who also worked on the film with me, I asked who's the first and he said Janet Guthrie.  I was like how the heck did not know that and I can't be the only one that does not know so that started my interest.  So I just went down the rabbit hole of research and got her autobiography which is fantastic.  I read other racer's biographies and comparing those and just thought this story is really important and important for everyone and race fans but I also thought there's a special thing that happens for women when they see someone achieve something and show its possible for them to do it too.  I think that is what started it all for me and here we are a few years later."

The entire documentary is on ESPN 30 for 30 and is definitely an interesting watch for people that love the Indianapolis 500 and the history that surrounds it.

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