Due to the global Coronavirus pandemic, the W Series has announced today that it will not return to on-track action until 2021.
The decision to cancel the eight-race season which was set to start in St Petersburg on 30 May was made by the FIA, Formula One, the DTM Series and the W Series’ partners and suppliers.
Ross Brawn, Managing Director of Motorsports – Formula One, said: “W Series has had an incredible impact on the world of motorsport, and we were excited to have them join our schedule this year. It is a big disappointment for all of us that due to the difficulties presented by COVID-19 the events will not take place, but we are looking forward to some exciting racing in 2021 when W Series returns.”
However, plans are being put into place to make 2021 a bigger season, including at least two races in support of the Formula One calendar – including races at the Circuit of the Americas in Texas and the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez in Mexico City.
“W Series is a global movement that exists to support the careers of female racing drivers everywhere, and to foster interest in and enthusiasm for motor racing among girls and women all over the world,” said Catherine Bond Muir, CEO of the W Series. “The 18 women who had qualified to race in the 2020 W Series represent 12 different countries, and the eight circuits on which they were due to race this year are located in Western Europe, Eastern Europe, North America and Central America.
“Delivering an international calendar of the kind that W Series requires, so as to take W Series’ diversity and inclusion message to girls and women globally, while prioritising during a global pandemic the health and safety of our drivers, our staff and the many other people who make W Series events such a success, requires resource at a level beyond the scope of a brave new start-up such as W Series.
“However, now that we have taken the very difficult but ultimately unavoidable decision to end any uncertainty surrounding our 2020 plans, we will focus our energies clearly on 2021, when we will resume our on-track racing programme, bigger and better than ever before.“
In the meantime, there will still be some W Series action to keep fans entertained as the new W Series Esports League will get underway on 11 June.
The ten round online championship is open to women only and points will be awarded in every race with the driver who has scored the most at the end of the year being crowned the winner.
Luke Crane, an eracer himself for the past decade, will commentate on these races with thirteen time Formula One Grand Prix winner and W Series Chairman David Coulthard acting as co-commentator.
Lee McKenzie will act as lead presenter and Billy Monger will provide punditry.