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Mauricia Grant, a former NASCAR technical inspector, has filed a $225 million lawsuit against the stock car racing sanctioning body for racial and sexual discrimination, sexual harassment and wrongful termination, saying “life in the garage” was appalling.

Grant, who is black, says co-workers called her “Queen Sheba” and accused her of working on “colored people time.” Her lawsuit alleges employees also made frequent graphic and lewd jokes, and in two instances exposed themselves to her. When she complained, her supervisor, Joe Balash, told her that she was working with “former military guys” with a rough sense of humor, and she should “deal with it.”

In fact, Grant claims Balash joined in the harassment. He once allegedly asked her if her workout routine included running “an urban obstacle course with a flat-screen TV” on her back.

Grant carefully documented the harassment, detailing 23 alleged incidents of sexual harassment and 34 alleged incidents of racial and gender discrimination in her complaint. She was fired in October 2007 for poor performance, despite a history of positive reviews.

“It didn’t diminish my love for the sport of auto racing,” Grant said, “but the job wasn’t the easiest thing to go to every day.”

Note: Women in traditionally male professions are often pressured to accept harassment as part of the workplace culture. Employers can combat that mentality by responding promptly to complaints. No employee should have to “deal with” harassment.

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