In the round-up: W Series has narrowed its initial selection of drivers from 61 to 28 as it forms the field which will tackle its inaugural 12-race championship.
W Series trims shortlist to 28It originally announced 55 drivers were under consideration, then announced a further six had added that list (Alessandra Brena, Francesca Linossi, Andreyeva Lyubov, Gosia Rdest, Ines Taittinger and Alexandra Whitley).
Last weekend 54 of those drivers attended an assessment at the Wachauring in Melk, Austria. From those W Series has trimmed its potential entry list by more than half. These drivers will now attend a four-day test in the W Series’ Tatuus F318 Formula 3 car next month. The first round of the championship takes place in May at the Hockenheimring.
Former IndyCar racer Lyn St James was part of the team involved in selecting the drivers. “Looking back at what has happened over the past three days, it has been good, it has been excellent, but it has not been easy for the drivers or for the judges, the instructors and the people putting on the programme,” she said.
“As much as we’d like racing to be an exact science, and even though it’s always ultimately about lap times, this programme has been able to put so many little pieces together to help evaluate not only the drivers’ talent but also the drivers’ potential.”
The following drivers were selected:
Jamie Chadwick, UK
Sabre Cook, USA
Natalie Decker, USA
Marta Garcia, Spain
Megan Gilkes, Canada
Grace Gui, China
Esmee Hawkey, UK
Jessica Hawkins, UK
Shea Holbrook, USA
Francesca Linossi, Italy
Vivien Keszthelyi, Hungary
Emma Kimilainen, Finland
Natalia Kowalska, Poland
Miki Koyama, Japan
Milou Mets, The Netherlands
Sarah Moore, UK
Tasmin Pepper, South Africa
Vicky Piria, Italy
Alice Powell, UK
Gosia Rdest, Poland
Naomi Schiff, Belgium
Shirley Van Der Lof, The Netherlands
Beitske Visser, The Netherlands
Alexandra Whitley, Australia
Fabienne Wohlwend, Liechtenstein
Caitlin Wood, Australian
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Notable posts from Twitter, Instagram and more:
I didn’t make it in to the W series. They weren’t looking for the necessarily fastest driver but the whole package. So I’m not too hurt about it! Congrats to everyone else who got selected for the next portion of the selection process. Moving forward! pic.twitter.com/bFI8OHrVOG
— Hanna Zellers (@HannaZellers) January 28, 2019
That fact that Ayla didn’t make the final 28 in the @WSeriesRacing “judging” says all I need to know. I follow junior open wheel as closely as everybody. She was one of the 5 most talented drivers there. Period. If your looking for an F1 driver, you pick the most talented.
— Steve Wittich (@stevewittich) January 28, 2019
Not a fan of @SkySportsF1 emphasising that all races next season will be exclusive to them. Awful for the growth and development of the sport that there is no live terrestrial coverage. It's good for Sky's pockets, terrible for the fans. #F1
— Russell Edge (@RussellEdgeNCL) January 28, 2019
Monday motivation. 🔧 #MCL34#FearlesslyForward pic.twitter.com/5yX5rOpBZa
— McLaren (@McLarenF1) January 28, 2019
- Find more official F1 accounts to follow in the F1 Twitter Directory
More motor racing links of interest:
Button on Verstappen and Hamilton (Sky)
"Knowing Lewis, it (his motivation) won't be about trying to better what Michael has done."
Mazepin gets private Mercedes test programme (Autosport)
"Ocon will assist Mazepin at the tests in a coaching capacity."
Fraga happy to blur the lines between real and virtual (Reuters)
"You never know how esports are going to develop in a few years. I don’t have plans to abandon the virtual side. I probably will be going to do them both. This makes me different right now compared to the other drivers."
Di Grassi Rails Against 'Flawed' Brake Rule (e-racing365)
"Di Grassi stated that he didn’t gain any advantage from his application of his Audi e-tron FE05’s brakes on his qualifying in-lap."
Lotus and Williams Advanced Engineering announce strategic technical partnership (source)
"Williams Advanced Engineering has acclaimed experience across the automotive sector and beyond, which will continue alongside this partnership. This expertise includes advanced propulsion systems and award-winning work applying knowledge derived from the pinnacle of battery technology during the inaugural four seasons of Formula E into electric vehicles."
Gasly: From karting to F1 (CIK-FIA)
"When he left karting for cars in 2011 at just 15 years old, Pierre Gasly made a bold decision. He was indeed one of the first not to continue in the Senior categories."
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Comment of the day
@Sundark on the highs and lows of the Daytona 24 Hours:
I managed to watch the night stint – pretty much all I could see of the 24 Hours. Alonso’s drive was epic, but I have to give the Acura Penske boys and Kobayashi a pat on the back too – especially Kobayashi putting in fastest lap after fastest lap in his stint. And the Wehlen Engineering car did great job too.
I was bummed to see that the Mazdas retired again, I hope their reliability improves from last year and they manage to identify and sort out their niggles by Sebring. Bernhard and Ticknell are superb drivers, and they deserve some wins this year.
It’s also sad that an experienced crew like the Mustang Sampling car didn’t get a proper shot as well, I’m sure they would’ve pulled a fast one in the challenging conditions that I read about during the final quarter.
Sundar Srinivas Harish (@Sundark)
From the forum
Happy birthday to Graeme, Hazel J, Mpj1994, Shery, Southpawracer, Hester Burger, William and Jack !
If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is via the contact form or adding to the list here.
On this day in F1
- 25 years ago today McLaren launched the Peugeot-powered MP4/9 for the 1994 F1 season. However the team was on course for its first win-less season in 14 years.
27 comments on “W Series gives test chances to 28 drivers from entry of 61”
29th January 2019, 0:26
So in FE the pole sitter lost the pole because he applied the brakes in his in lap (!) in a different way than his quali lap.
And they say F1 rules are absurd…
29th January 2019, 1:54
Yeah that truly is ridiculous. If what he says is true and he didn’t heat the brakes and cause the effect that the new directive was introduced to prevent… It goes without saying that this was a huge stuff up from Formula E.
29th January 2019, 7:10
I think it’s important to remember why this rule exists. The rule is in place to stop drivers overheating their brakes on the in-lap by attempting to keep tyre pressures up through excessive brake use.
Last race someone managed to do just this and cause a 3 car crash in the pit lane.
Whilst I agree that the penalty seems overly harsh (and the exact rule does need some tweaking), the reasoning behind the rule is sound – just because he didnt gain an advantage, doesnt mean he should be let off, similar to unsafe release penalties etc.
29th January 2019, 6:49
From the tweets:
So what were the selectors/judges looking for – does anyone know? I don’t want to speculate or read between the lines, given the amount of stuff being tossed around at the W series, but I am genuinely curious.
29th January 2019, 8:04
I initially suspected that maybe age had something to do with it, seeing names like Jamie Chadwick being selected who is only 18 and Ayala being 25, but, there are other 25 year old drivers who have been selected and some with a large career gap.
I do wonder if contracts and attitudes came into play…
29th January 2019, 8:20
@maddme – thank you. Not age, possibly contracts are both excellent points.
29th January 2019, 8:51
One girls speech about saving the planet was more entertaining. All while wearing their W Series sashes and posing with hands on hips for the cameras. The swimsuit and evening wear rounds were then used to top up the final scores.
Yes I’m joking, but this stuff really does still happen, in 2019. Sad.
29th January 2019, 13:52
Looking a the instagram accounts of some of these women it seems the swimsuit rounds were exactly what they want.
29th January 2019, 10:13
@phylyp add the restriction to have at least one from Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, Italy and UK since the 6 events will take place in those country and local driver is always good to have extra visibility in national media.
Then probably drivers which are free for all 6 rounds and depending on contract/sponsor agreement as stated above.
My main fear is that the field won’t be that competitive and there might be a big gap front to end.
29th January 2019, 10:46
Didn’t look properly, there is actually no German driver in the selection…
29th January 2019, 14:17
Tell me about misrepresentation, no one from Latin America. Not sure if there was one trying to get a spot but what it’s true is the need to have the next Checo Perez.
29th January 2019, 10:40
@phylyp Yeah. I look forward for definition of ‘the whole package’ too…
29th January 2019, 12:52
In all honesty, the fact that one driver explains her non-selection with a rather oblique allusion to ‘the whole package’, and some journo tweets sore comments about the selection criteria because one driver he happens to be a fan of wasn’t selected, doesn’t necessarily mean that either of them are right. The simplest explanation might still be that the other candidates were better, end of.
Thus far, all we have is polemic statements by people who came up short or identify with someone who did. I’d be more surprised if no one complained.
29th January 2019, 12:54
Very true, nase. Good point!
29th January 2019, 13:56
@phylyp – I did see an article a few days ago with more details but can’t find it now… but this is one from a few months back, on BBC Sport.
Not sure exactly what the 10 ‘modules’ were, but I think it would definitely be fair to say that driving only played a part.
29th January 2019, 14:08
@neilosjames – thank you very much. It appears that they have followed a systematic approach to selection, which is definitely reassuring. It does put those two tweets in a different light. It is interesting that “skills of interviewing and presenting” are rated as selection criteria, instead of being added on through a ‘finishing school’ if required.
29th January 2019, 19:38
I think that was in an interview posted by the W Formula itself @phylyp, @neilosjames, I remember that one, could have been maybe a week or two – pretty sure it was included in the roundup.
Wurz also mentioned that he based it on the program they did with the FIA in their young driver effort (that was also run with Wurz & co.)
Iestyn Davies (@fastiesty)
29th January 2019, 19:20
@phylyp As Lyn St. James said in the text, they were also scouting for future potential. I was surprised Agren, Tomaselli and maybe Gomez missed out however.
29th January 2019, 19:44
@fastiesty @bascb – thank you, both!
29th January 2019, 9:52
Only three of those names are familiar to me from any occasion before.
Ocon assisting another driver in a coaching capacity, LOL.
29th January 2019, 10:49
Who told that guy F1 are looking for the fastest drivers?
29th January 2019, 13:27
Looking forward to that championship in general, good change 2 will come from The Netherlands with 4 in the remaining.
Female drivers will always be back on a seat, simply because of sponsoring.
A Male Person is on average more worth in marketing today.
selection. Ps; @Nase is agree, some that could will also be out, only 18-20 can get a drive this year.
29th January 2019, 19:12
You couldn’t be any more wrong.
If there was a female driver with a junior career even half as good as Robin Frijns, she would be in F1 before you could blink.
Suzie Wolff got a test seat in F1 despite the fact that there were about 40 drivers more impressive than her in lower categories.
29th January 2019, 19:39
THANK YOU for getting it… nobody else here does.
30th January 2019, 12:07
She’s done well for herself for only having 4 podiums in 10 years of senior racing.
30th January 2019, 16:49
FINALLY some sense. It seems so obvious but somehow not understood by many.
Good female driver = scarce good
Scarce good = Money
30th January 2019, 1:33
If Alonso went transgender, would he be allowed to race in the W Series? He could add that title to his growing portfolio.
Comments are closed.