It was lights out for the first time for W Series in 2022, with Jamie Chadwick taking the victory in the USA for the season’s first double-header at the Miami International Autodrome.
Spanish racing driver Nerea Marti started on pole for the first-time in her career but did not get away well, meaning she fell from the front of the grid, allowing reigning champion Chadwick to take the lead from the starting line.
It was an unfortunate opening lap for Alice Powell, as she brought out a Safety Car after hitting the wall at the exit of Turn 7 resulting in an early retirement from the race. The session was red flagged with the remaining seventeen drivers lining up in the pits, whilst Powell’s car and the debris was cleared from the track.
The second start-up allowed Chadwick to maintain the lead with Emma Kimiläinen close behind for many laps. Battling for third was Fabienne Wohlwend and Marta Garcia, with the Spanish driver managing to come out in front after Wohlwend went wide at Turn 11.
With eight minutes of the race to go, Kimiläinen made her move on Chadwick, managing to take the lead moving herself up into first through Turn 11.
British racing driver Abbie Eaton and Dutch driver Beitske Visser were racing closely until Wohlwend went wide, making contact with Eaton at Turn 2 causing the two to collide at Turn 6, meaning both had to retire from the race.
With less than ten minutes of the race remaining, another Safety Car was deployed. On the re-start, Kimiläinen dropped down to third behind Garcia, who finished second whilst Chadwick regained her lead, crossing the chequered flag to take the first win of the 2022 W Series season.
Unfortunately, Kimiläinen spun on the final lap, allowing Jessica Hawkins to move up into third, taking her first W Series podium finish. Jamie Chadwick took twenty-five points at the season’s opening race and heads into the second race of the Miami double-header on pole position.