The new W Series will launch in spring of next year, featuring approximately 20 talented women in the field. They'll be competing for a total of $1.5 million, with the first place winner taking home $500,000.
There are folks, casual and professional alike, that scoff at the idea of a segregated motorsport series. "Why do women need their own series" and other similar questions. Organizers, however, feel that the time has come for women to get better recognition, and more importantly, better funding. Advisory board member for the W Series David Coulthard explains how female drivers hit a barrier in the field.
"At the moment, however, women racing drivers tend to reach a glass ceiling at around the GP3/Formula 3 level on their learning curve, often as a result of a lack of funding rather than a lack of talent."
Many in the organization believe that if women were given a better opportunity, they'd perform equally as well as their male counterparts. Catherine Bond Muir, CEO of W Series, remarks on the idea.
"W Series drivers will become global superstars—inspirational role models for women everywhere—and every organization, every company, every sponsor and indeed every single person who helps W Series’ winners and champions achieve those ground-breaking successes will be able to celebrate their part in it, publicly, to lasting worldwide acclaim."
This doesn't mean just anyone can qualify for the W Series. Each applicant is put through rigorous track testing, simulation appraisal, fitness trials, and technical engineering tests.
Best of luck to those accepted!