Don't worry, it's for a good cause.
It's not a stretch to say that supercar rallies are dude-heavy events. The majority of ladies who attend usually do so as passengers, although that is not always the case. Chanterria McGilbra aims to change that. She's the organizer of the Prancing Ponies Rally, the first all-female Ferrari rally in the US. The rally aims to accomplish two things: raise money to send 10 college-bound girls to Europe for a summer cultural immersion program and to show young girls that driving Ferraris isn't just for boys.
The rally kicked off yesterday (August 5) in San Francisco and ends the same day down the coast in Santa Barabra. By supercar rally standards this is extremely short, but Prancing Ponies is in its first year. Although the route is somewhat lacking, the roster of participating cars certainly isn't. Attending the event are four 458 Spiders, a California Turbo and a LaFerrari. Intrigued? So were we, which is why we reached out to Chanterria to find out why she started Prancing Ponies and about her passion for Ferrari. Chanterria resides in the Bay Area and works as the manager of corporate operations for Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical. She earned an MBA from the International University of Monaco.
"Getting my MBA and living abroad in Monaco was my first eye-opening experience of how becoming a global citizen created so much courage that I knew I could do anything. This is how Prancing Ponies came to exist." Of course when any gearhead thinks Monaco they think supercars, and according to Chanterria the supercar spotting was excellent. "The cars you see on a daily basis are mind blowing: They are some of the rarest and most expensive cars in the world." Pro tip: The Hotel de Paris is the go-to spot to see Bugattis. Her experiences abroad planted the seed for Prancing Ponies, but Chanterria says it was the questions she got from young women while driving her Ferrari that made the idea for the rally finally come together.
"What was unexpectedly exciting was how teenage girls reacted to me driving my Ferrari. They would ask me great questions like, 'How can I get that car?' and, 'What career choices do I make to get that car?' " While the idea for the rally was born abroad and over time, the organizer's Ferrari fandom took just one test drive to establish. She is the owner of a 2015 458 Spider with a titanium metallic exterior and a chocolate suede interior. It was purchased from Ferrari of San Francisco, and said purchase was a bit historical as it potentially made her the first African American woman to buy a Prancing Horse in Northern California.
"They told me directly that I was the first African American woman to buy from their dealership and then through my networking and groups I am still yet to meet another African American who has purchased a Ferrari before 2014." Of all the women participating in the rally, Chanterria may have the biggest lead foot. She won't be driving the LaFerrari but she did train to race in Italy. She's also a member of Northern California's Ferrari Owners Group and participated in the first ever international Ferrari Cavalcade. While Prancing Ponies is starting out from humble beginnings-again, by supercar rally standards-the goal is much bigger than a day drive from San Francisco to Santa Barbara and a single summer trip for 10 girls.
"The goal of Prancing Ponies Rally is to create an international community of women drivers, alternating rallies between the US and Europe each year, and raising money to either send girls from the US to Europe or Europe to the US," Chanterria told us. We're all for more supercar rallies, especially those that take place in our own backyard. We're looking forward to watching the Prancing Ponies Rally grow, and to see if any rival Lamborghini rallies sprout up. Note: The photos here are of the 2015 Ferrari Cavalcade and were provided by Chanterria McGilbra.