Nathalie McGloin, who was paralyzed from the chest in a car accident at the age of 16, will never forget the day she was able to present Kimi Räikkönen with a trophy on the podium after the British Grand Prix.
He received an exceptional honor in 2018 when he became the first disabled athlete to qualify for the F1 podium.
Meetings with the Finnish “Iceman” included disbelief and humor.
- That moment provided the best day of my life.
Incredibly, McGloin described the awards ceremony in a recent Hidden Voices podcast on the-race.com.
In a wheelchair, McGloin went to introduce himself and tell Räikkönen about his role in the prize-giving day the day before the competition.
At the same time, Räikkönen rushed an overzealous fan out of his bundle and his reaction to McGloin's introduction was cool.
- I said, hey Kimi: I am the third prize Nathalie McGloin and stretch out the competition the next day.
He just looked at me and said that of course you are.
Some crazy woman in her wheelchair thinks she’s on the podium the day after the race, McGloin said.
In the end, it was Räikkönen who finished third in the race.
McGloin's wishes had previously been for Räikkönen or Max Verstappen to drive to third place.
When it was time for the awards, Räikkönen was surprised to arrive on stage.
- Kimi hadn't seen me.
He jumped across the podium, and said it was you!
I replied that I told you!
He found that awesome.
It was the pinnacle of it all.
His reaction made the situation real, McGloin said.
He tweeted a picture of the prize-giving right on the night of race day and still considers the same picture the main picture of his Twitter account.
Sebastian Vettel won the race and Lewis Hamilton finished second.
According to McGloin, he was taken into account excellently by all the racers on the podium, although he was excited about how he was doing with the heavy prize.
Räikkönen politely helped McGloin hand out the trophy.
Räikkönen and McGloin have also met since that July 2018 race weekend.
The roads have met at the International Automobile Federation (FIA) Awards Gala 2018 and the Geneva Motor Show 2019.
Read more: IL: Kimi Räikkönen's friendly gesture for a disabled woman fascinated - he bowed to a racing driver in a wheelchair
McGloin, now 37, drives himself in sports cars himself.
He became the first spinal cord injury in Britain to receive a racing license.
He has competed in the Porsche Club Championship since 2015 and also serves on the FIA Disability Committee.