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Formula 1 sets sights on introducing female racing series

Formula 1 is hoping to introduce an all-female racing series as early as next season, with the aim of developing women in motorsport.

Formula 1 is aiming to introduce an all-female racing series, with the aim of creating opportunities for female drivers to reach the higher levels of motorsport. Just weeks after the curtailment of the third season of the W Series due to funding issues, F1 are believed to be very close to launching their own championship as early as next season, although this would still require approval from the FIA. The financial issues with the W Series resulted in their 2022 season ending with three rounds to spare: One at the US Grand Prix weekend, and a double-header at the Mexican Grand Prix. The W Series organisers had hoped to resolve the financial issues and see out the season. RacingNews365 understands Red Bull were in discussions to support the series, but this was declined. The early conclusion to the season handed Williams development driver Jamie Chadwick her third consecutive W Series crown.

Formula 1 aiming to boost prospects for women in motorsport

The prospect of an all-female racing series would go a long way to reversing some of the criticisms previously aimed at Formula 1. Earlier in the season, F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali was criticised for downplaying the chances of a female racing driver reaching the sport in the coming years. "Realistically speaking, I don't see – unless something that would be like a sort of meteorite coming into the earth – a girl in Formula 1 in the next five years," commented Domenicali at the Belgian Grand Prix. Ahead of this weekend's United States GP, Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton expressed his disappointment at the collapse of the W Series, and called on the F1 bosses to do more to help female drivers. "There is not enough representation across the board, within the industry," Hamilton told media, including RacingNews365.com . "There's not really a pathway for those young, amazing drivers to even get to Formula 1, and then you have some people who say we're never going to see a female F1 driver ever. So that's not a good narrative to be putting out. "So, I think we need to be doing more, and with the organisation, with Formula 1 and Liberty [Media] doing so well it's not a lot for them to be able to help out in that space."

RESULTS 2024 F1 Spanish Grand Prix - Qualifying