23-year-old Marta Garcia has been crowned the first champion of Formula 1’s all-female series, F1 Academy.

The Spaniard clinched the title in the first race of the final weekend of the championship at Circuit of the Americas on Saturday.

The championship made it’s first appearance on the F1 support bill this weekend, with all sessions also being broadcast live for the first time.

From 2024, all seven rounds of the championship will be held as support races on the F1 programme. All 10 F1 teams will also become more involved and support one driver each in the F4 spec series.

Garcia converted pole into a race win in the opening race in Austin, fending off a late attack from Alpine junior Abi Pulling.

Garcia only needed to finish in the top three to make it mathematically impossible for Lena Buhler to erase and overturn the points difference in the final two races.

A seventh victory of the season for Garcia sealed a maiden F1 Academy title for Prema, as title rival and Alfa Romeo-backed Buhler drove to third. 26-year-old Buhler is set to depart the championship at the conclusion of the weekend.

“I’m so emotional right now, I was crying in the car,” Garcia said after returning to the pitlane.

“Super happy with the win in the championship, with my team Prema, and all of the hard work we’ve been doing through the season.

“It’s great, and I’m just really, really out of words.”

The championship win also means that this weekend will be Garcia’s last in F1 Academy, who, with the backing of the championship, is likely to make a move to the Formula Regional European series next season.

She previously drove in all three seasons of the now defunct W Series, picking up a best championship result of fourth in 2019.

“She drove a great race, but actually over the season, she’s just been very impressive,” said F1 Academy managing director Susie Wolff of Garcia’s coronation as champion.

“She’s obviously had more experience than the other drivers, but she’s capitalised on that.

“I’m really excited to see where she goes from here because we’re going to be putting our full support behind her to make sure that she carries on and progresses up the ladder.”

Source:  Read More 

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *