Heléne’s motoring career started in the late ‘70s as a rally driver, participating in club and regional events as well as blind-navigators rallies. Gill Findlay navigated for Heléne for many years and together their greatest achievement was winning their class in the Total Economy Run.
For two years Heléne worked as Radio Jacaranda’s motoring and motorsport announcer in Pretoria prior to their relocation to Durban in 1987. Just before Heléne ’retired’ as a rally driver in 1991, her eldest son, Roger, partnered her as her navigator in the annual Total Economy Run.
Heléne was one of the first female members to join the SA Guild of Motoring Journalists and has been one of the 26 strong jury that select the South African Car of the Year since the second competition, 24 years ago. Because the motoring world is perceived as a male domain, Heléne has, over the years, shared her motoring knowledge with other women, presenting motoring courses, Women’s Motoring Forum, a basic motoring course especially for women.
A public speaker her topics range from motoring and motor safety to motivational talks. She is a Past President and founder member of the Umhlanga Women Achievers. Heléne has been the Chairman of the Beautifying Umhlanga Together Association since 2003, and a trustee for the eThekweni Association of Clean Communities (Keep Durban Beautiful).
In June 2007 Heléne was asked to assist with a motoring website especially for women, www.cars4women.co.za She was also one of the four judges for the first ever Associated Magazine’s WOW (Women on Wheels supplement) Women Car of the Year competition. At the beginning of 2009 Heléne was selected as the only South African evaluator for the World Women’s Car of the Year.