Motor racing-Jorda missing from 28-woman W Series shortlist

Motor racing-Jorda missing from 28-woman W Series shortlist
By Reuters

29/01/2019 at 04:44Updated 29/01/2019 at 04:47

LONDON, Jan 28 (Reuters) - Former Lotus and Renault Formula One development driver Carmen Jorda was missing from a 28-woman short-list for the new all-female W Series published on Monday after trials in Austria at the weekend.

Organisers said the Spaniard, at 30 one of the oldest in the 55-strong long-list drawn up last November, opted not to participate.

"In the end not everyone whom we long-listed opted to take their chance and that's up to them, said a spokesperson.

"We wish them well, just as we wish well those drivers who never chose to throw their hats into the W Series ring in the first place."

Jorda, a member of the governing FIA's women in motorsport commission, never drove a Formula One car in her team role and caused some controversy last year when she suggested women might have a 'physical issue' with F1.

More than 100 applicants from around the world had sought to join the new series whose ultimate aim is to help women develop the skills to compete in Formula One for the first time since 1976.

The 28-woman list included Britain's Jamie Chadwick, who in 2015 became the first female driver to win a British GT championship and last year became the first woman to win a round of the British Formula Three series.

Britain was the most represented country on the short-list with five, Chadwick joined by compatriots Alice Powell, Esmee Hawkey, Jessica Hawkins and Sarah Moore.

The 54 drivers who attended the three-day tests in Melk had to impress judges who included ex-F1 drivers David Coulthard and Alexander Wurz along with former IndyCar and Indianapolis 500 racer Lyn St James.

The 28 selected will now take part in a four-day test in a Formula Three car in Almeria, southern Spain, in late March before the final 18-strong grid, plus two reserves, is confirmed.

The first race is scheduled for Hockenheim, Germany, on May 3 and the overall series winner will collect $500,000, with prize money down to 18th place. (Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Pritha Sarkar)