All-female ‘W Series’ collapses

Fri, 16 June 2023, 09:00

Jun.16 (GMM) The all-female single seater category called W Series has now collapsed.

Earlier in June, we reported that the series’ drivers – including Finn Emma Kimilainen – were waiting to see if the financial problems that halted the engines last year would be resolved.

Kimilainen said organisers were busily looking for “millions (of dollars) in a hurry”.

But it has now been confirmed that administrators have been appointed and all staff – including the drivers – made redundant.

“We are seeking expressions of interest in the business and assets of the company,” an administrator said in a statement.

“We would ask that any interest is registered with us as quickly as possible.”

Triple W Series champion Jamie Chadwick, 25, has already kick-started a new career in the Indycar support category Indy NXT, where she is currently 17th overall out of 20.

The Briton has also split with the Formula 1 team Williams’ driver academy.

“We’ve had conversations with her and she’s now following a career path in Indycar,” team boss James Vowles said. “It is wise to focus on that at the moment.

“There’s no point putting her back on an F1 path. She is now on a path that can lead to great success and she is doing well.”

Vowles thinks the FIA’s own all-female championship, F1 Academy, can now be “strong” even if the W Series has collapsed.

But that is limited to women under the age of 25.

33-year-old Kimilainen, however, is not too disappointed.

“It wouldn’t even be the right series for me at this point in my career,” he told Iltalehti newspaper. “I wouldn’t be interested in jumping behind the wheel of an F4 car anyway.”

Williams’ Vowles thinks that even with younger female drivers now supported by F1 Academy, the concept of a women in Formula 1 is still “a long way off”.

“You’d have to go all the way back to karting and create an environment that can produce champions, in the same way it has been done for champions on today’s grid,” he said.

You may also like