W Series Spain: Two-time Champion Shows Her Class

Jamie Chadwick had a very dominant drive in Spain to add to her double win in Miami. Abi Pulling put in a solid performance to take the second spot on the podium with her mentor and flatmate Alice Powell making it an all British podium inf Barcelona.

In qualifying yesterday Chadwick topped the session with an under the radar lap after teammates Powell and Hawkins battled with Powell eventually coming out in P2 with Pulling splitting the two drivers. That gave Chadwick her 9th pole in W Series and the advantage for the race.

A great start for Jamie Chadwick. Image courtesy of W Series Media

Lights out and Chadwick makes a great start immediately coming across to cover off Alice Powell. This gives room Abi Pulling to take advantage of her great start. By turn 1 Pulling was on the outside of Powell, making a great move to take P2. Emma Kimiläinen took advantage of her good start as well as she passed Visser for P4.

The drivers get away clean with only Chloe chambers going wide around turn 3, just kicking up some gravel on her way around. Everyone made it round the first lap safely with Marti making the biggest leap forward from P11 to P8 on lap one.

By the end of the first lap Chadwick had pulled out a one second gap on Pulling, however it didn’t take Pulling long to close that gap to half a second. Chadwick was beginning to come under pressure from both Powell and Pulling as Moore was setting the pace with some fastest laps.

With 20 minutes to go Powell was pushing Pulling all the way by setting replacing Moore’s fastest laps. The aim to get Pulling to either overtake Chadwick or Powell will overtake her. At this point Powell was only 3 tenths back and looked to make a move down the main straight, unfortunately not making anything stick.

The top 3 chasing each other down. Image courtesy of W Series Media

About halfway through the race and further down the field, Moore was showing that earlier pace and lined up a move on Jess Hawkins. When the gap was close enough down the main straight Sarah Moore got into the slip stream and the took the inside line on Hawkins into turn 1. The move was almost done for Moore but Hawkins stuck with her, forcing Moore to make a great move around the outside of turn 2 for P10.

There was then a stalemate for the rest of the race as the drivers needed to protect their tyres from degrading. However, the gap between Pulling and Chadwick was very slowly coming down with Pulling’s engineer encouraging her to keep the pressure on.

As the final lap came around protection of the tyres no longer mattered so it was time to push. Pulling really put the pressure on Chadwick all the way through but just wasn’t quite close enough to make a move.

All smiles on the podium. Image courtesy of W Series Media

While Chloe Chambers unfortunately spun out on the last lap, her teammate won for a fifth time in a row and a third time this year. Chadwick won from pole with a very dominant performance. Pulling finished P2 with Powell in P3 after having to back off to preserve tyres.

W Series Miami Race 2: Chadwicks makes it a Double

Chadwick puts in a dominant performance to win the second race in Miami. In contrast to yesterdays race it was a clean session but still had the last lap which W Series is becoming known for.

The second fastest times in qualifying set the grid for this race. This meant Chadwick started on pole with Marti in P2, Kimiläinen in P3 and Powell in P4. Both Kimiläinen and Powell were looking to improve on their results from race 1.

Lights out and everyone gets away clean. Chadwick with a good start kept the lead into turn 1 while Kimiläinen behind her had a great start. She was alongside Marti heading towards turn 1 but gets stuck behind Chadwick and stayed in P3.

Through sector one kimiläinen stayed close to Marti which meant by the time they got to turn 11 she was lining up a move on Marti. She goes too deep just like the restart of race 1 and undoes all the hard work she had done. Next time around, on lap 2 she had another go and this time made it stick.

While this was happening Marta Garcia was making up places which is important for her after receiving a penalty after the race yesterday for colliding with Kimiläinen in the closing stages of race 1.

Powell was also wanting to improve on race 1 and was closing the gap on Marti after Kimiläinen’s move. She kept searching for a passing position but couldn’t find the right opportunity to make a move.

The pressure from Powell pushed Marti closer to Kimiläinen, and with 20 minutes to go Marti was in the slipstream of the team Puma driver. Kimiläinen made a mistake in turn 17 and Marti took back P2.

This battle was far from over though. Down the main straight Kimiläinen had more speed and takes the inside line into turn 1. Just when she thought the battle was won though, Marti gave Kimiläinen one final battle into turn 11. Marti out braked Kimiläinen and came out on top.

Trying to get in on the action, Powell makes a lunge into turn 1 on Kimiläinen. She went too deep though and couldn’t make it stick, leaving Kimiläinen to great a gap to Powell. This opened the door for Belen Garcia, but Powell was able to keep her behind.

Moore chasing down Visser before her overtake. Image courtesy of W Series Media

Further back and Moore was putting in fastest laps in an attempt to catch Visser. With 14 minutes to go Moore had caught Visser, making a great move into turn 1. This pace wasn’t too last forever though as Abbi Pulling was on the charge behind her.

Having taken fastest lap, Pulling was following Moore and passed Visser in a great move around the outside of turn 11. It wasn’t long before she was only half a second behind Moore with only 5 minutes left of the race.

Moore was holding Pulling off until the pressure seemed to get to her, and she locked up, going deep into turn 11. Pulling took advantage and made it up to P7. It only got worse for Moore as Visser got past as well in the last minute of the race.

In the final few minutes of the race Powell had closed up on Kimiläinen in P3. On the final lap after the 30 minute time Powell looked to make a move on kimiläinen. Going into turn 17 kimiläinen was pushing hard to keep Powell behind but the back end stepped out causing her to spin round. This caused some damage to Powell’s front wing, but she was able to carry on to the end.

So heartbreak again for kimiläinen but Jamie Chadwick made it a double win in Miami to start her 2022 season. Nerea Marti and a damaged Alice Powell joined her on the podium. A second W Series podium for Marti and an important points haul for Powell after yesterday’s disappointment.

All smiles from Marti, Chadwick and Powell on the podium. Image courtesy of W Series Media

Next up is Barcelona where we only have 1 race on Saturday the 21st of May.

W Series Race 1: Chadwick Wins in an Exciting Season Opener

Jamie Chadwick opens her 2022 defence campaign with a win in a very exciting and dramatic race 1. Miami proved to be quick but had good overtaking spots as the was battles all the way down the field.

As they line up on the grid Marti was ready to cover off Chadwick into turn 1 but Chadwick was pointing towards her competitor. The rest of the grid follow behind as all 18 drivers made it to the race after various crashes in qualifying.

Lights out and disaster for Marti who stalled on the grid along with Powell. Heartbreak for Marti after taking pole but Chadwick and Kimiläinen made it through with great starts for each of them.

Jamie Chadwick leads into turn 1. Image courtesy of W Series Media

After stalling Powell was in P18 and was pushing to catch up to the pack on the opening lap. She hit the wall on the outside of turn 7.  She hit some dust just off the racing line and it dragged her wide, causing her to hit the wall which sprayed lots a debris.

This brought out the safety car which means that, in W Series, the clock keeps running down until the track is clear to go racing. But, with 18 minutes left on the clock, the stewards finally decided to bring out the red flag so the marshals could actually remove the car.

Abbi Pulling was reporting potential damage and vibrations on her car after the first lap incidents. However, after investigation by her engineer in the red flag period there was a flat spot on her tyre but it was not down to the canvas so her engineer gave the ok.

Alice Powell, the driver coach. Image courtesy of W Series Media

Just before the rolling restart we got to witness Alice Powell the driver coach. She is Abbi Pulling’s coach and, evening though she was in P9, Powell told Pulling to go and get a podium. This struck a cord with Pulling who then got on the radio to plan some push laps on the restart.

At the restart Chadwick timed it perfectly and bolted once the safety car was in. The cortDAO teammates where battling each other in P3 and P4. Garcia manged to stay ahead at turn 11 by being late under braking and eventually begun to pull away from Wohlwend.

As Garcia got up to the back of the leaders, Wohlwend became the leader of a train of cars, which were all trying to overtake each other. Down the main straight it became 3 wide with another pair overtaking behind. This repeated itself for several laps.

With about 9 minutes left many wanted to get past Wohlwend. But she tapped the wall in sector 2, causing the car to become unbalanced. As Abbie Eaton came to overtake the slower pink car, Wohlwend went straight on and took Eaton with her into turn 5 the next lap.

Meanwhile the battle for the lead had got closer. Even with the yellow flags in sector 1 this didn’t stop the speed of Kimiläinen. She had a great run into turn 11 and broke late to take the lead from Chadwick. Then putting in a strong defence before the safety car eventually came out for the stricken cars.

Fabienne Wohlwend gets a ride back after an incident. Image courtesy of W Series Media

It looked like Kimiläinen had timed that move perfectly as the clock ran down. But she would need one last strong defence because the safety car came in to give us an exciting 1 lap shoot out to the end.

On the restart Kimiläinen tried to leave Chadwick behind but the 2 time champion was with her all the way and brought Garcia along with her. In the slipstream Chadwick had more speed down the main straight and was ahead of Kimiläinen. Garcia then tried to follow Chadwick, making it a 3 way battling into turn 1.

Heartbreak for Kimiläinen as she goes deep into turn 1 trying to take back P1. She managed to get going into P3 and was all over the gearbox of Garcia. In a last attempt to push for P2 she out-braked Garcia into turn 17. But disaster as she spun out of the points finishing P17.

This left the first win of the season to Jamie Chadwick, Garcia capitalising on Kimiläinen’s mistake to finish P2 and a debut W Series podium for Jess Hawkins. The podium was full of smiles as the season is now officially underway.

W Series Qualifying: A Maiden Pole Sitter for 2022

Nerea Marti takes her first pole in W Series after a dramatic end to the first qualifying of the season.

30 minutes of qualifying and it’s a double header weekend so the fastest time sets the grid for race 1 and the second fastest time sets the grid for race 2. The plan was simple then, drive the fastest to get the most out of the session.

10 minutes in and it was the usual suspects topping with time sheets. Chadwick was on pole with Powell and Kimiläinen closely behind. It is always important to remember that for W Series all the cars are required to start the session with a full tank of fuel, so lap times were consistently getting faster.

Pushing the limits at this new track, Marti had a moment nearly ending her session coming into turn 7 and 8 but she kissed the wall with her tyre and was able to carry on. Having watched the Formula 1 sessions as well the drivers are beginning to find gains around this new track.

Half way through and the traffic is causing havoc as Powell and Kimiläinen were now faster than Chadwick. Street circuits always create traffic issues. Those on fast laps can unintentionally be hindered by divers on slow laps because there are not many places to easily get out of the way on this fast street circuit.

Alice Powell bringing the heat in Miami. Image courtesy of W Series Media

The session saw its first red flag when Chloe chambers spun at the chicane. She was top rookie at that point in P5 and putting in a very soild performance, not far off her teammate, Jamie Chadwick. She did manage to get the car going again so the red flag didn’t last long.

With only 9 minutes left it was time for the drivers to push for their position for race 1. The banker laps are for race 2 which will mix up the grid. This format for double headers means the goal for drivers is just to go fast, which makes it much easier for us to follow at home.

Coming back out Chadwick had the pace on the drivers. She took top spot and only kept improving her time as fuel weight came down. Powell had a strong start to the session but now couldn’t seem to get on match Chadwick’s pace.

Jamie Chadwick back out for the final push. Image courtesy of W Series Media

In the closing stages of the session everyone was putting in faster laps and finding the limits of the track. Nerea Marti put in an incredible lap with 90 seconds left in the session, topping the time sheets. This pushed Chadwick down to P2 and Powell down to P3.

Just 30 seconds to go and Fabienne Wohlwend had a big incident bringing out the red flag. She got out of the car and was ok, but this ended the session. That meant that Marti took her maiden pole in W Series for race 1 and was on the first row for race 2.

Chadwick will be pole for race 2 while Powell lost out the most from the red flag. She was up by 2 tenths on Marti’s pole lap when the red flag came out. Powell will start P3 for race 1 and P4 for race 2.

W Series Weekend Preview: Miami

W Series starts its 3rd on-track season in Miami for the biggest season yet. The series will again be supporting the Formula 1 calendar with a record 10 races, starting with the double header at Miami.

After 195 days since the last race we get two for the price of one. This season features two double headers at the start and the end of the season in Mexico. The rest follows the format of last year with qualifying on Friday and the race on Saturday.

Miami is a very fast street track which demands a lot from the drivers. This is a great place to start to show off the talent of these women and test their ability to tame such a demanding track. Overtaking opportunities will be similar to Formula 1, coming mostly from turns 11 and 17, but lines will be different so don’t be surprised if they come in other corners.

The Two time Champion Returns

Jamie Chadwick is back with Jenner racing to defend her title. She starts the season as the women to beat in a newly formed team funded by Caitlyn Jenner. Her main rival from last year, Alice Powell, will be looking to bring the heat all season.

Last season Alice Powell started off her campaign stronger than Chadwick, winning the first race of the season at the Red Bull Ring while Chadwick finished in P6. This is something Powell will want to repeat and take full advantage of the double header. However, she will need to keep this momentum all season if she wants to finally beat Chadwick.

Champion Jamie Chadwick is congratulated by Alice Powell on the podium in Austin 2021. Image courtesy of W Series Media

Five New Rookies

After pre-season testing in Barcelona five drivers make their W Series debuts in Miami. Tereza Babickova, Bianca Bustamante, Chloe Chambers, Emely De Heus, and Juju Noda. This is the current surge of young talent to add to break out star from 2021, Abbi Pulling.

They will compete against some of W Series most seasoned drivers like Alice Powell, Jamie Chadwick, Emma Kimiläinen, Jessica Hawkins and many others. But all 18 drivers will start from zero and be given a fair chance to fight for the title.

Chloe Chambers getting to grips with her new car. Image courtesy of W Series Media

W Series has signed a contract with Sky Sports so all qualifying’s and races will be broadcast live on Sky Sports F1. There will also be highlights on channel 4 and practice and qualifying streamed from YouTube and Facebook.

Qualifying starts at 2pm BST on Saturday. Race 1 is at 7:10pm BST on the same day and race 2 is at 3:10pm BST on Sunday.

W Series: Chadwick seals second title with crushing win in COTA finale

Jamie Chadwick completed her W Series title defence by dominating the final race at Circuit of the Americas, converting pole position into victory while her title rival Alice Powell was stuck in the midfield.

Chadwick got a near-perfect launch from pole to see off any challenge from Abbi Pulling on the front row. Pulling slotted into second place, while Beitske Visser jumped Sarah Moore for third, Emma Kimilainen went from sixth to fourth, and Powell overtook Jess Hawkins to take seventh.

Visser had to take a defensive line into the first corner to see off Kimilainen, who was just too far back to make it three places gained at the start. But Kimilainen kept up the offensive through the opening lap and within a few corners had taken third place from Visser.

By the end of the first lap Chadwick had already pulled out a second in hand over Pulling, who was struggling to get clear of Kimilainen. The Finn lapped within a few tenths of Pulling in the early laps, but Pulling eventually settled into the groove and started to inch clear instead.

As Chadwick kept opening up her lead at the front, Powell was running in seventh behind Belen Garcia and unable to find any way past the Scuderia W car. To deny Chadwick the title Powell needed to outscore her by 10 points, but by lap 7 there were already 12 seconds separating the two of them on track.

 

After running three tenths behind Garcia, Powell saw an opportunity to take sixth place at the start of lap 9 but braked too late into Turn 1 and let Garcia back through. She tried the same inside move at the start of the following lap, but was too far back to pull alongside Garcia.

Powell eventually got the move done on lap 12 by taking an aggressive entry to Turn 1 and squeezing Garcia to the edge of the track. But by this point there were only five minutes left on the clock, and Chadwick was almost five seconds ahead of Pulling and the rest of the field up front.

Chadwick eventually crossed the line with that five second gap to take the title. Pulling claimed her first W Series podium in second, which left her with enough points to earn eighth in the standings and a guaranteed place in the 2022 championship. Kimilainen finished third, where she also ended in the standings.

Moore recovered after dropping back at the start to take fourth place ahead of Visser and Powell, and Belen Garcia finished seventh. Sabré Cook had been running in eighth place and was on course for her first points of the season, until she came together with Jess Hawkins with six minutes to go. That allowed Nerea Marti, Ayla Agren and Caitlin Wood through to take the final three points positions.

Chadwick, Powell and Kimilainen end the season as the top three in the standings. Marti was fourth in her rookie season, and Moore, Fabienne Wohlwend, Pulling and Visser have secured places on next year’s grid by completing the top eight in the championship.

W Series Preview: Double-header in Texas

W Series has made its way to the circuit of the Americas in Texas for the last 2 rounds of the season. Due to some logistical issues the finale to the 2021 season has been moved to this Sunday making it a double header after a 7 week break.

COTA is a 3.4km circuit with a 11% gradient on the run up to turn 1. Only 2 of the 18 drivers have driven around the track. American driver Sabre Cook has previously raced 3 times there and Ayla Agren moved to Houston, Texas in 2012 so lives only 150 miles from the circuit and has driven around it but never competed there.

Sabré Cook at Misano W Series Media)

For the month of October W Series has gone pink highlighting Breast Cancer Awareness month. The cars will have updated liveries and the drivers will were pink gloves and pink racing boots to support the campaign. It’s a great way for the series to make a statement for their first races outside of Europe.

The final countdown

Going into the finale it is all tied up at the top with both Alice Powell and Jamie Chadwick both on 109 points. Emma Kimiläinen is still in the race for the top because she is only 34 points behind with 50 points available over the weekend. The prize for winning the series is $500,000 and 15 FIA super license points.

For Powell and Chadwick this has been a battle all season and whoever is the most consistent over the weekend will most likely take the 2021 championship. Alice Powell currently sits on top having won 3 races compared to Chadwick’s 2 this season. This has been an exciting battle all the way through the season.

Jamie Chadwick, Veloce (Courtesy of W Series Racing)

There will be fighting all the way through the field though with the top 8 getting an automatic place in the 2022 W Series season. This will be a chance for all the drivers as only 22 points separates 8th to last in the championship. Irina Sidorkova is currently 7th in the standings but unfortunately will not be able to defend her position due to travel restriction so Caitlin Wood will be taking her seat to get her opportunity to get into the top 8.

W Series Qualifying: Kimiläinen beats championship rivals to pole

Qualifying at Zandvoort was an important session for the drivers as overtaking here could be hard. The crowd was already electric on a Friday, with Beitske Visser was looking to impress after a P5 in practice.

After a short 5 minute delay due to red flags earlier on in the day, the session got underway, and it was noticeable that with different power and tyre compounds, the majority of the drivers took wider lines through the banked in comparison to Formula 3 and Formula 1 in order to hold onto the speed through the corners.

Fabienne Wohlwend crashed out of qualifying early in the session at the exit of turn 3 after going wide from the banked corner. She got out of the car and was OK but will be starting from the back of the grid tomorrow.

Back on track when the red flag was lifted and there was a switch up in run plans with nearly 24 minutes left on the clock. Visser and Sarah Moore came out on fresh tyres, while others stuck to their used tyres which did not need as long to warm up.

Jamie Chadwick had provisional pole for the first 10 minutes and was improving all the time. Jess Hawkins and Alice Powell were improving behind her though. Hawkins couldn’t quite match Chadwick in the end, but Powell went faster and took provisional pole.

Irina Sidorkova went off at turn 9 but was able to make it back onto the track. However, she joined by going straight across the racing line and is under investigation. The off hurt her run plan and she qualified P15, looking to move up the order during the race tomorrow.

Emma Kimiläinen had to sit out most of practice so was looking to improve massively and put in some fantastic laps to be provisional P2 at the halfway mark. Chadwick then improved and went fastest with home favourite Visser managing a P3. At the halfway point every driver was still improving lap times and so much movement happening meant the timing graphics couldn’t keep up.

In the last 9 minutes it was set to be all change in the order as the lap times kept tumbling down. Powell put in a stunning lap to get provisional pole which couldn’t be matched by Chadwick who lost out in the final sector to go P2. Kimiläinen was in P3 and Nerea Marti put in her personal best lap to be in P4. With 5 minutes 45 seconds to go the red flag came out again as Sabré Cook spun and beached the car at the chicane. She was then out of qualifying, finishing P17 in a day to forget for the Bunker team.

Once the track was cleared the session was back underway with a shootout for pole position. Chadwick went fastest in the first two sectors but again lost the speed in the last sector and couldn’t improve on her time. Kimiläinen was the only driver improving in the first laps out, but all drivers were improving again on the second laps. Issues with the timings meant there was confusion at the end of the session as to who had actually taken pole.

Once the timings had updated, impressive speed in sectors 1 and 2 meant that Kimiläinen took a great pole to continue her momentum from her victory last time out in Spa. Powell narrowly beat Chadwick to P2 because Chadwick was struggling to gain time in that final sector. This is the first time this season that someone other than Chadwick or Powell have qualified on pole.

There are six Brits in the top eight with great results for Abbi Pulling in P5, Hawkins in P6, Abbie Eaton in P7 and Moore in P8. Beitske Visser only managed P12 at her home race, but with the crowd behind her she will be looking to put some moves on the other drivers to make her way to the top.

Race starts at 16:30 local time (15:30 BST) tomorrow on Channel 4.

W Series Preview: The Dutch Comeback!

The Formula 1 circus arrives at Zandvoort for the first time in 36 years with the W Series there to be a part of it all for Round 6 of the championship. Having had plenty of work done to get the circuit ready, it is now 4.259Km long, 0.007Km shorter than the track which Niki Lauda won at in 1985. The track boasts a mixture of some high speed, cambered corners, and blind braking spots unlike any other circuit.

After last week’s crash during qualifying at Spa it was great to see all six drivers involved come out OK. Beitske Visser and Ayla Agren have both been cleared to race this weekend, and Visser especially will be looking to have a successful home race. She has a mixed experience with the circuit, having won her first race in ADAC Formel Masters Series back in 2012 there just 1 day after breaking her back. She showed then her determination to fight back to race and will do the same again this week.

Abbi Pulling is back for the second time for the PUMA W Series Team. Finishing in the top 10 at Silverstone, she had a strong performance on her W Series debut and will be looking to repeat this success after some disappointing recent results in British F4.

Only a few drivers other than Visser have experience of the track in different configurations. Pulling and Fabienne Wohlwend have the most recent experience, competing there in the 2019 Ginetta GT5 challenge and 2017 Audi TT Cup respectively, while Sarah Moore has raced the old track Emma Kimiläinen has tested at the circuit. This means the experience of the drivers is relatively level so this will be a test to see who can master the track over Friday and Saturday.

Can Chadwick extend her lead?

Emma Kimiläinen had a fantastic race last time out at Spa, winning by 8.4 seconds and passing both Jamie Chadwick and Alice Powell on her way to victory. With Chadwick finishing P2 and Powell finishing P4, there is now a 7 point gap at the top of the table between the defending champion and her rival.

Every point is crucial, and Alice will be looking to use her driving experience to gain knowledge on the track and have an advantage on Jamie Chadwick over the weekend. Both drivers will be aiming at maximum points so expect maximum attack from these 2 as the season starts to draw to a close. With just 3 rounds left, including Zandvoort, Powell can’t afford to lose sight of her competitor and Chadwick will be focused on extending the gap.

W Series Spa preview: Summer is over and the fight is on!

The summer break is over, and W Series is back for Round 5 at the famous Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium. The longest circuit on the calendar, the 18 drivers are ready to compete at a track well known for its blind, high speed corners and changeable weather conditions. This will test the talent on display in the all-female series.

Eight drivers on the grid have previously raced at the circuit including Jamie Chadwick, Alice Powell, Abbie Eaton, Sarah Moore, Vicky Piria, Beitske Visser, Fabienne Wohlwend and Caitlin Wood. Caitlin will be stepping up for a second time as reserve driver this season with the PUMA W Series team after a solid performance in Hungry.

Who’s going to be on top?

Coming into the second half of the season there is a really close battle for the championship with only one point separating Chadwick and Powell, and Nerea Marti 35 points back in third.

Chadwick and Powell have been exchanging wins all season, and with 2 wins each the difference is due to Chadwick’s third-place finish at Silverstone. Consistency in a championship like this is always key to success, but that seems to be common practice for these two so a fight to the end looks on the cards to see who will come out victorious. Just one mistake or no points finish could be pivotal in the championship battle.

The fight for third

Just three points cover the drivers in third to seventh, and with good performances from each driver in these positions, the fight to third is looking very interesting.

Marti put in a great performance as a rookie to stick to the top two of Chadwick and Powell last time out in Hungry, finishing in third and putting herself ahead of Sarah Moore by one point.

Moore herself has had a strong start to the season with a podium in the first two rounds, but only managed P7 at Silverstone and didn’t score points in Hungry. She will be looking for a fight back and to hang on to her one-point lead over Emma Kimilainen.

Kimilainen has had a solid start with a podium and points finishes in three of the four rounds so far and therefore is currently fifth in the standings, only one point ahead of Fabienne Wohlwend and Irina Sidorkova who are tied on points.

Wohlwend has had a very up and down first half of the season, getting two podium finishes but then finishing P10 in Round 2 and suffering a DNF in Round 4. In comparison Sidorkova has only been on the podium once but has had higher points finishes with P8 in Round 1 and P4 in Round 4, missing out on points in Round 3.

This battle for third in the championship looks to go right to the end of the season and could be anyone of the five already in contention. However, Beitske Visser and Belen Garcia, in eighth and ninth respectively, are not too far behind and could really come into play if they can put in some great performances over the last four races.

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