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W Series splits opinion among female racing drivers

Plans to launch an all-women racing collection subsequent 12 months have divided opinions among present female racing drivers.

W Series will likely be a free-to-enter, single-seater racing collection that goals to extend female participation in motorsport. The grid will likely be shaped of 18-20 drivers who will likely be chosen by a pre-selection programme to race in equivalent F3-level automobiles for a complete prize fund of $1.5 million.

The collection claims to have a “firm belief that women can compete equally with men in motorsport” however argues “an all-female series is essential in order to force greater female participation”. The collection can be backed by former F1 race winner David Coulthard and legendary F1 designer and engineer Adrian Newey.

However, response among present female drivers, who’ve spent their careers thus far racing in opposition to males, has been combined.

Pippa Mann, who has entered the Indy 500 seven instances throughout her profession, stated the introduction of an all-women collection would characterize a step backwards for female drivers hoping to compete on the highest stage.

“What a sad day for motorsport,” she stated on Twitter. “Those with funding to help female racers are choosing to segregate them as opposed to supporting them. I am deeply disappointed to see such a historic step backwards take place in my lifetime.”

European F3 driver Sophia Floersch added: “I agree with the arguments [made by W Series] — however I completely disagree with the answer.

“Women want long-term help and trustful companions. I need to compete with the most effective of our sport. Please evaluate it with economics: Do we want separate Women Management/Advisory Boards? No. Wrong approach.”

Charlie Martin — who’s hoping to turn out to be the primary transgender racing driver to participate within the Le Mans 24 hours — advised CNN: “While it could create alternatives for some female drivers, it sends a transparent message that segregation is appropriate.

“We no longer discriminate in sport based on race, so it is particularly jarring that we feel it is acceptable to do so based on gender in 2018. As racers, we want to compete against the best drivers — regardless of age, race, sexual orientation or gender — and prove we are the best at what we do.”

However, Tatiana Calderon who’s a growth driver for the Sauber F1 crew and has scored 9 factors within the GP3 collection this 12 months, believes W Series has the potential to assist aspiring female racing drivers.

“Having raced for more than a decade in karting, Formula 3, GP3 and World Series among others, but having been a very small minority in getting that far in motorsport, I know how difficult it is for female drivers to get opportunities to progress their careers,” she stated.

“Hopefully this series help provide those opportunities to some young rising female talent and eventually allow the best to prove that we can compete at the same level as men.”

Jamie Chadwick, who’s at present eighth in British F3 and have become the primary lady to win a race within the collection in August, additionally believes W Series will create alternatives for female racing drivers.

“W Series is giving female drivers another platform to go racing,” she stated. “It’s no secret that motorsport is an extremely powerful business usually dictated by monetary components.

“As a funded championship, W Series not solely presents a improbable alternative for high female expertise to race however will even encourage many extra younger females to enter the game. I am a racing driver and, if I might, I might race 365 days of the 12 months.

“I will still race against men in other championships but W Series is the perfect supplement to help me develop and progress further through the junior motorsport ranks. I’m excited about what’s to come!”

W Series is because of get underway in May 2019 with six 30-minute races all through Europe within the opening season.

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