In the next episode of our series on women in motorsport, we'll once again look directly into the Škoda Motorsport team. Kateřina Janovská is the liaison between the engineers and mechanics, not only at the tests but also at the competitions themselves. How did she get her dream job and what do motorsport and flying have in common? You will find all this out in the interview.

Katka, your life is intertwined with race cars and airplanes. How did it all come about?
My life has always been about dreaming big. For me, flying is just a clear mind, freedom and joy. As far as the racing car goes, similar technologies are used as in an airplane, skills from one field are transferable to another, and the competition itself brings extra adrenaline rush. Once you try it, there's no stopping it. That's where the worlds of flying and racing come together. I started because of my friends, and I hope I will never stop.

When did the turning point come and it became clear to you that you wanted to devote more time to aviation?
Like a lot of people, I started at the airport in handling, but I quickly got hooked. I quickly realized that this would be one of the paths that would accompany me in the future. The longer, the better.

In addition to your professional contact with aviation, do you also fly planes yourself?
It was a long way from working at the airport to piloting an airplane, but it was worth it. The feeling I get when I can fly a plane by myself is incredible. It may be an expensive hobby, but if you dream big, you will always find a way to achieve your dream, never doubt it.

Let's move on to motorsport. You have a lot of experience as a rally co-driver. How did you get into navigation?
Once again, it was through my friends that I got into race car driving. It was strange, but I immediately felt at home in the car. It was like flying, I figured out quickly that this was for me, so I invested a lot of time and energy in learning and improving my co-driving skills. Calmness, consistency and diligence are important for the co-drivers and this experience was a good fit for my personal life.

You've done a lot of competitions on both asphalt and gravel. Which surface do you prefer?
My favourite surface is undoubtedly snow. I have competed in several competitions in the north of Finland and this surface has captivated me. It's such a unique experience to participate in a rally on this surface.

Do you have a favourite competition?
My favourite competition is definitely the Arctic Lapland Rally. Obviously because of the snow it's on and because it's in the vicinity of Rovaniemi, Finland, so I can give my Christmas wish list directly to Santa in his village on the edge of town.

Aren't you ever tempted to jump in the car and sit back in the navigator's seat next to Gus Greensmith or Oliver Solberg?
Even though I have invested and continue to invest a lot of time and energy in rallying, I have to be reasonable and honest with myself. I think that the current requirements and skills of co-drivers in the WRC are something else entirely. I have a lot of respect for Elliott Edmondson and Jonas Andersson. They are absolute professionals in their field. I am pleased with another thing. I think that through my day-to-day work at Škoda Motorsport, I can contribute much more to the success of both drivers than sitting in the co-driver's seat.

How did you go from being an active racer to working for Škoda Motorsport team?
It's quite simple, if you're a rally enthusiast, just like me, you come from Zlín where the Barum Rally is held and you're in the rally community, you simply go for the chance. I found out about the opportunity to work with the Škoda Motorsport team. Working in a world-class team and taking part in world-class events was exactly what I wanted. I went through the selection process and here I am. In my dream job.

What exactly is your responsibility?
The world of motorsport is specific, you have to be flexible and cover a wide range of areas. Now I am involved in cooperation in the management of the workshop and this year I am also dealing with the needs of customers directly at the World Championship events. I am the main contact between engineers and mechanics and I enjoy this new challenge and find it fulfilling. I also work on tests, where I coordinate activities around the car based on information from the engineers. My main responsibility is to make sure that the car is set up correctly before each drive and that there is an accurate record in the development drives.

Does your experience from a rally car help you in any way?
Life is about experiences, so every past experience will always help you tackle a new challenge. So my experience as a co-driver certainly helps me, but also my flying experience helps me to be precise, consistent and have an eye for detail.

What do you enjoy most about your job?
My current opportunity to work as a car technician in a rally program is very fulfilling and interesting for me, because you must work under pressure, be consistent to avoid mistakes and be able to keep an eye on the situation around the race car.

Is there anything you would say to young women who are also attracted to motorsport?
Dream big, never doubt yourself, we can all turn our dream into reality.