Sarah Moore Tops Penultimate W Series Practice in Assen

by Becca Stubbs

Sarah Moore and Emma Kimilainen topped the W Series practice sessions in Assen as the penultimate race of the series got underway.

Finnish female Kimilainen had led the way during the first practice session in Assen, Netherlands on Friday morning, after setting an impressive time of 1:34:195, but British driver Sarah Moore sprung a surprise attack in the second practice session to end her day on a high.

Moore had a fantastic day on the track and went third fastest in FP1 with a time of 1:34:553 and she clearly found a rhythm on the Dutch circuit as she improved her time in FP2 with a 1:34:247 to top the board at the end of Friday’s practices.

Championship leader Jamie Chadwick can wrap up the W Series title this weekend if she wins the race and her nearest rival, Beitske Visser, fails to finish in the top four.

However, the nerves looked to have seeped in during her first practice session and she finished in sixth place after setting a lap time of 1:34:839.

Although later in the day, she looked to have shrugged it off and showed the Netherlands crowd that she’s ready to claim her crown as she finished third in the second practice session, improving her time slightly.

Despite Chadwick’s 10-point lead over Visser in the Championship, the Dutch driver isn’t letting her rival go without a fight and, with Assen being Visser’s home race, she seemed determined to battle on the track.

She came out fighting in FP1 and had the edge over Chadwick as Visser finished fourth in the session, setting a time of 1:34:655.

However things seemed to slip in FP2 and Visser found herself languishing in twelfth with a 1:35:391, while Chadwick climbed the grid to third after a slight improvement on her time with a 1:34:720.

Spanish driver Vicky Piria isn’t in the race for the title but she still put on a great performance on track, finishing eighth in FP1 but improving dramatically in FP2 to go second fastest after she set a lap time of 1:34:484.

Marta Garcia, who currently sits third in the W Series Championship standings, had a disappointing start to her Assen weekend. During FP1 she struggled for pace, only managing a 1:35:558 which saw her in twelfth and her story in FP2 wasn’t much different either as she went slower and set a time of 1:35:611 to slip into fourteenth.

If Chadwick wins the race on Saturday and Visser fails to finish in the top four the inaugural title will go to Chadwick. If not, then the Williams F1 Team Development driver will take the title to the final race, and her home race, Brands Hatch in August.

For everyone else it’s still all to play for too after the W Series announced those finishing in the top twelve will automatically get a seat for the 2020 roster while the remaining drivers will be forced to go through the try-out process once again.

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