Woman becomes first disabled racer in country

Woman becomes first disabled racer in country

Woman becomes first disabled racer in country

A woman who became disabled after an accident at the age of 16 has become the first disabled rally driver in Türkiye.

Kübra Denizci, 35, fell from the third floor of a building 19 years ago and had to continue her life in a wheelchair as a result of a spinal cord injury due to a broken neck. Thanks to intensive physical therapy exercises, she strengthened her arms and upper body and got her driver’s license when she turned 18.

In order to be successful in motorsports, her biggest dream, she needed to be able to sit upright and keep her muscles strong. She underwent months of robotic physical therapy, occupational therapy, pool therapy and various exercises to prepare for the challenging piloting process, along with rigorous driver training for motorsports, and her team spent months designing and modifying a special rally car for her.

Talking to journalists, Denizci stated that it was very devastating to learn that she would never walk again when she first experienced the accident.

“It was not easy for me and my family to suddenly encounter this situation and continue our lives with a disability when I had a healthy, active life. I was hospitalized and underwent physical therapy for a long time, but after two and a half years, I said, ‘What can I do? If Kübra had not experienced this, what would she have done, where would she be in her life?’ I took the first step by graduating from university.”

After studying international relations, Denizci stated that her academic dreams did not stop there, and 10 years later, she started her second major, psychology and got another diploma.

“Now I am a psychologist. I am also doing my master’s degree in clinical psychology,” she added.

Stressing that she felt free while she was driving, Denizci said she decided to do this as a sport after a while.

“The fact that I constantly received physical therapy and never stopped exercising was a very important factor in my becoming a rally pilot. If I couldn’t keep this body like this, I wouldn’t have gotten into motorsports,” she said.

Emphasizing that everyone competes in the same category in motorsports, Denizci recently competed in her first rally race and wrote her name in the history of motorsports as the first disabled female rally driver in the country.

The success of Denizci, who is one of the two women pilots in the world who can rally after a spinal cord injury, was announced to the whole world by the International Automobile Sports Federation (FIA).