Milka was born in Caracas and is a Venezuelan race car driver. She was introduced to the sport when she was invited to a driving clinic by a car club in Venezuela. She holds master’s degrees in Organizational Development, Naval Architecture, Maritime Business, and Marine Biology (earning the last three masters degrees simultaneously) and also she has worked as a naval engineer.
Talent, beauty, brains and competitiveness are just a few of the adjectives that can be used to describe race car driver Milka Duno – one of the most successful female race car drivers in the world today. Milka has competed in more types of race cars in more different racing series than any other current female driver – and has eight major motorsport wins to her credit.
When Milka won the Rolex Series Miami Grand Prix she became the first woman in history to win a major international race in the USA. Milka also earned the highest finish ever by a female driver, 2nd place, in the now 52-year history of the legendary 24 Hours of Daytona. Milka was the first Hispanic female driver, in the now 101-year history of the race, to qualify for and compete in the world famous Indianapolis 500 – a race that she would qualify for and compete in for three consecutive years.
Milka is now making another historical transition – from IndyCar to stock car racing – and in 2013 competed in her first full stock car racing season in the ARCA Racing Series. She finished the season 7th in the Driver Point Standings and became the 2nd highest finishing female driver in ARCA’s 61-year history.
During the 21-race season Milka earned the ARCA Series pole at Talladega Superspeedway and generated two top-10 and thirteen top-15 finishes. In the 2013 ARCA Series season open at Daytona Milka qualified 2nd and took the lead on the first lap.
Milka is the first Hispanic woman to compete in stock car racing on a national level in the United States. Milka inducted into the Latin American International Sports Hall of Fame. Milka became the first Venezuelan athlete to be inducted into the Latin American International Sports Hall of Fame at their 35th Anniversary Induction Ceremony in January, 2010.
Milka Duno Achievements in Car Racing
- First Hispanic woman to compete in the ARCA Racing Series in its 61-year history.
- Earned the highest finish for a Venezuelan driver in the ARCA Racing Series in its 61-year history.
- 2nd highest finishing woman in the ARCA Racing Series driver point standings in its 61-year history.
- Earned pole position in the 2013 ARCA Racing Series race at Talladega Super speedway becoming only the 4th woman in history to win an ARCA Racing Series pole and the first Venezuelan to earn an ARCA Racing Series pole in the 61 year history of the ARCA Racing Series and only the 2nd woman to earn a ARCA Racing Series pole at Talladega
Super speedway in 25 years.
- First woman in history to win a major international race in the United States.
- Eight professional career race wins at top levels. Numerous wins at minor levels.
- During her time in the ARCA, IndyCar, Rolex and American Le Mans Series has earned 8 wins, 13 podium appearances, 16 top-5 finishes and 26 top-10 finishes.
- First Hispanic woman, in the 101-year history of the race, to compete in the Indy 500.
- First Hispanic woman to compete in the IndyCar Series.
- First Hispanic woman to lead an IndyCar Series race.
- Historic 2nd place finish and highest finish ever by a female driver in the 24 Hours of Daytona in its now 52-year history.
- Three wins in the Rolex Grand American Series.
- Five wins in the American Le Mans Series.
- First woman to win at Petit Le Mans – has won twice.
- In only 2nd year of racing named “Venezuelan Auto Racing Driver of the Year”
- In only 2nd year of racing won first racing championship – Panoz GT Series.
- Crowned Vice-Champion Driver in American Le Mans LMP 675 Championship.
- First woman to reach the podium in GTS Class of American Le Mans Series.
Milka wins Ferrari Challenge Race at Road Atlanta and becomes the first woman to win a Ferrari
Challenge Race in North America
• First woman to drive LMP 900 – fastest car in American Le Mans Series.
• First woman to drive Daytona Prototype – fastest car in Rolex Series.
• Twice competing at legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans, France.
• Invited by Porsche AG to be VIP Porsche Supercup Driver at F1 GP of Spain.
• First woman to drive the fastest car in Europe’s World Series by Nissan.
• First woman to score points in Europe’s World Series Light by Nissan.
• First woman to win a Ferrari Challenge race in the USA.
Milka’s passion and determination to succeed on the track is equaled by her passion and desire to “give back” off the track. It is Milka’s way. It is who she is. “I’ve been given many wonderful opportunities and I feel that it is a responsibility to make the most out of each and every one of them. I feel an obligation and a desire to give back – to let others know that they too can achieve all of their dreams and to help in any way I can to motivate and inspire them – to take advantage of every opportunity and to make their dreams come true!”
In 2004, Milka created the “Milka Way” Program – whose mission it is to inspire children and students to “Aim for the Stars” and achieve academic excellence. Milka Way visits inspire and motivate students to focus on their education by helping them understand that a strong academic background will benefit them for their entire life – in all aspects of their life – and in any career they choose.
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