Three W Series drivers to make F3 test debut

All-female championship continues drive to push women up motorsport ladder.
  • Tereza Bábíčková, Chloe Chambers and Abbi Pulling will each test for a full day
  • F4 and Formula Regional driver Hamda Al Qubaisi also taking part
  • Only one woman has competed at F3 level since 2019 rebrand

W Series has announced three of its drivers will take part in a Formula Three test at Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours in France from 16th to 17th September.

Tereza Bábíčková, Chloe Chambers and Abbi Pulling will each be given the opportunity of a full day of testing.

The aim of the test is to introduce the trio from the all-female single seater championship to the demands and challenges of this level of the support ladder.

Hamda Al Qubaisi, who races at the Formula Regional and Formula Four levels, will also be taking part in the test.

The move highlights how W Series is taking steps towards delivering on its overall strategy of progressing women to the highest levels of motorsport.

“Providing more opportunities for women drivers across single seater racing is a key priority for all of us at Formula One and across the whole sport,” said Stefano Domenicali, president and chief executive of Formula One.

“This test, the second of its kind, will provide real opportunity for these four talented drivers to demonstrate their potential to teams and make the case for a competitive seat in years to come.”

This time last year, W Series drivers Irina Sidorkova and Nerea Martí were given the opportunity of a similar test.

Since Formula Three’s rebrand in 2019, only one female driver has taken part in the series – Sophia Flörsch in 2020.

The news follows a statement from International Automobile Federation (FIA) president Mohammed Ben Sulayem that the organisation is ‘committed to greater opportunity for women in the sport’.

Ben Sulayem’s comments last month came after Domenicali claimed “a meteorite” would be required for a female driver to reach Formula One in the next five years.

BlackBook says…

This represents a much-needed step in the right direction for W Series, with its success intrinsically linked to the drivers it is able to introduce at either Formula Two or Formula Three level.

It is good timing for the FIA as well, after Domenicali’s ill-advised comments on the potential of a female driver reaching Formula One in the short-term future.

Time will tell who is able to take the next step, especially as W Series’ most successful driver Jamie Chadwick is set to exit the FIA junior ladder entirely to move over to Indy Lights in the US.

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