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Singapore Grand Prix 2022

Bond Muir pinpoints how W Series can still "mature"

W Series boss Catherine Bond Muir feels the championship still needs to "mature" after positive steps in recent times.

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W Series CEO Catherine Bond Muir has pinpointed how she believes the all-female championship can "mature" even further despite progress made in the past couple of years.

Launched in 2019, W Series originally raced on the DTM undercard in its debut campaign, before being cancelled in '20 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A switch was then made in 2021 to bring the series onto the Formula 1 support bill alongside F2 and F3 - with races taking place in Mexico and the United States as well as a first trip to Singapore this coming weekend.

Despite the raising of the championship's profile, helped by Caitlyn Jenner coming in as owner of Jamie Chadwick's Jenner Racing 'team', Bond Muir still feels there is much more needed to be done.

"One thing that I'm quite surprised at is people still describing us as being a mature championship being in our third year, I still feel sort of reasonably young," Bond Muir told selected media including RacingNews365.com.

"I think there's a long way that we need to go to reach maturity.

"[We will get there when] we do move some of our drivers onto other series.

"We've demonstrated to date that a lot of our drivers are getting a lot more experience in different championships and getting driving opportunities that they otherwise wouldn't have had.

"We've got examples of drivers racing at Le Mans, in the DTM and what Jamie [Chadwick] and Alice [Powell] have done.

"But an unexpected consequence is the media exposure that people like [former driver] Naomi [Schiff] and Alice have had.

"Naomi moving to Sky for analysis and Alice doing lots of work with Channel 4.

"I suppose it is an inevitable consequence of everyone trying to attract more women into all aspects of motorsport and obviously, we applaud that."

Chadwick can wrap up her third W Series title in Singapore, and has recently tested an IndyLights car at Sebring with the Andretti Autosport squad with the potential for a deal.

Due to her success, she has become the face of W Series, with Bond Muir optimistic about what happens after Chadwick does leave the championship.

"You're damned if you do and you're damned if you don't," she explained when asked about facing the prospect of losing the biggest star in the series.

"So, on one hand, you create a star, Jamie is unquestionably our biggest star, our best known driver all over the world, because she's been so successful.

"Now, if we didn't do that, the fact that we hadn't created a star may have caused us problems, too.

"We've got some more young drivers now and they are suffering from not having more track time, because the way that we're structured at the moment is that the incumbents already a clear inbuilt advantage.

"So, I don't mind having a star and also her leaving us. That is part of our story.

"What I hope is that we get some youngsters who make significant progression next year, should they stay with us, who can show a lot of promise, because that's what we're all about."

			© W Series
	© W Series

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