F1 Academy confirms the five teams entering new all-female championship

Thomas Maher
2013 British Grand Prix start, Silverstone July 2013. F1 Academy

2013 British Grand Prix start, Silverstone July 2013.

Some of the most respected teams of the junior racing categories are set to enter the F1 Academy for the inaugural season in 2023.

Five teams have been confirmed for the first season of the ‘F1 Academy’, an all-female racing championship that kicks off next season.

The F1 Academy was announced last month, just prior to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, with F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali and F2 CEO Bruno Michel, who will serve as the Academy’s manager, revealing details of the championship which is set to help out burgeoning female racers take an early step on the motorsport ladder.

The aim is to help find junior talent from grassroots level such as karting, and give them access to fundamental knowledge and experience before making the jump to the likes of Formula 3.

To that end, five prominent junior racing teams have put pen to paper and signed up to compete in F1 Academy, all of whom are well-established racing outfits.

The five confirmed teams are ART, Campos, Carlin, MP Motorsport, and Prema –  all of whom race in Formula 2 and Formula 3 on F1’s ladder.

ART won the Formula 3 crown in 2022, with Prema winning the team championship, while MP Motorsport secured both titles in Formula 2, with Carlin finishing in second.

What is the format of the F1 Academy?

Each team will field three cars in F1 Academy, which will race using a Tatuus T421 chassis fitted with an Autotecnica 165bhp engine, with tyres supplied by Pirelli.

The 2023 season will have seven events of three races, totalling 21 races for the championship. 15 days of official testing are planned, as well as overlapping F1 Academy at at least one F1 Grand Prix weekend.

The exact calendar and the 15 female drivers are yet to be announced, but could draw upon the talent pool of the beleaguered W Series – the independent racing series for female racers that concluded its 2022 season early due to financial struggles.

“It is exciting to be able to announce the five teams that will be racing in the F1 Academy for next year and who will be providing this fantastic opportunity to the young and talented women to begin their journey into competitive motorsport,” said F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali.

“We believe it is important that everyone has the chance to follow their ambitions and get the support and guidance needed to progress and excel.

“The F1 Academy is an important part of our plan to increase diversity and representation in motorsport and we are looking forward to the first season in 2023 and stay tuned for more news in this area.”

Prema, veterans of the junior racing series, confirmed their pride at being able to take part in the series as team boss Rene Rosin said: “We are proud to take part in this new project. Driver development has always been our vocation and we cannot wait to work with new and highly-motivated drivers.

“It’s particularly exciting to see drivers work hard, improve and achieve outstanding results. In addition, we have a considerable history supporting the efforts towards women drivers and hopefully, in a short time, we will be celebrating another success story.”

Carlin team boss Stephanie Carlin was similarly effusive: “We’re delighted and proud to be announced as one of the five teams competing in the first three seasons of the F1 Academy, starting from 2023. It is a fantastic initiative from Formula 1 to help redress the balance of women representation amongst racing drivers.

“Driver development has always been the cornerstone of what we do at Carlin and, having been formative in the careers of over 30 F1 drivers over the last two decades, we’re extremely excited to help develop talent in the F1 Academy as well.

“With the right opportunities, support and time, there’s absolutely no reason why it can’t be the norm to see women racing at the very pinnacle of motorsport.”

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