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W Series 2021 [Merged]


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#1 balage06

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 10:41

W Series announces the provisional 2021 calendar, all rounds are on the F1 support bill

 

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#2 Anja

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 10:50

Just one race per round then? Pretty underwhelming but I suppose it wasn't easy to squeeze in with F2/F3 expanding to three races. 



#3 KWSN - DSM

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 10:50

End June start later than I thought it would be, when do we know who the drivers will be?



#4 pitlanepalpatine

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 10:54

While I understand there may be cash concerns but is it truly wise to skip something like Monaco, Baku or Canada as an opener and instead go for Paul "Car Park Snore Fest Central" Ricard when you're trying create interest and show girls can race too? I mean this screams "Let's put 'em somewhere where they can't break anything if they go wide" on their first go. 



#5 Requiem84

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 10:55

Awesome to see W series getting a slot in Zandvoort! :)



#6 Rinehart

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 11:00

While I understand there may be cash concerns but is it truly wise to skip something like Monaco, Baku or Canada as an opener and instead go for Paul "Car Park Snore Fest Central" Ricard when you're trying create interest and show girls can race too? I mean this screams "Let's put 'em somewhere where they can't break anything if they go wide" on their first go. 

Well the cars can hit each other or destroy themselves at fairly open circuits (as Grosjean recently demonstrated) so I'd describe that as a cynical view. The business model of W Series is that they own all the cars and they need to keep their operating costs down to, so I don't think their pragmatism is something to be too critical of.



#7 balage06

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 11:00

End June start later than I thought it would be, when do we know who the drivers will be?

 

My guess is that they will stick with the drivers they announced for 2020.



#8 Bleu

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 11:52

They seem to race on Saturday which is kind of odd. I would have expected them to take F2/F3 spot on Sunday whichever is not there.

I think F2/F3 first race is where F3 was this year and second race where F2 was. So some hours between those races, with F1 FP3 and Q taking place between.

Edited by Bleu, 08 December 2020 - 11:52.


#9 Ben1445

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 12:06

I think all rounds being on the F1 support bill has some downsides, chiefly that it is relatively expensive to actually go to an F1 event. 

 

With a higher entry fee being charged, it will be a little harder to get those who wouldn't normally go to a motor race in person to buy tickets. That's something which apparently did happen when it was racing as a DTM support and ticket prices were low enough to take a chance on seeing what it was all about.  

 

I'm sure there's more positives and negatives than that to consider though, this just happens to be my first reaction to the news.



#10 balage06

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 12:09

They seem to race on Saturday which is kind of odd. I would have expected them to take F2/F3 spot on Sunday whichever is not there.

I think F2/F3 first race is where F3 was this year and second race where F2 was. So some hours between those races, with F1 FP3 and Q taking place between.

 

I think the best potential spot on Sunday belongs to the Porsche Supercup in European events (between the third F2/F3 race and the GP), so only early morning or late afternoon/early evening are left as options, which is not ideal. But otherwise I agree, the Saturday schedule will be very tight like this.



#11 BRG

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 12:09

While I understand there may be cash concerns but is it truly wise to skip something like Monaco, Baku or Canada as an opener

 

It probably isn't W Series choice.  They have to fit in with F1's plans.  I am sure they would have loved to race at Monaco.  Can't imagine they were interested in going to Baku , and a fly-away like Canada, whilst an attractive prospect, would have been expensive.



#12 KWSN - DSM

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 13:30

The Tautus is a F3 car, what time difference between them and a Euro F3 should we expect?



#13 balage06

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 13:43

The Tautus is a F3 car, what time difference between them and a Euro F3 should we expect?

 

Things get complicated there, because three separate F3 regulations coexist at the moment:

- international Formula 3 - used only in FIA F3, it's basically the ex-GP3 car

- the "old" F3 with an additional halo on top - used in Euroformula Open and Japanese F3 (which is now called Super Formula Lights), this isn't technically F3 anymore, but the FIA still homologated it in the end

- regional Formula 3 - used in regional F3 series, Formula Renault Eurocup and W Series - it's a middle ground between F4 and F3, the cars are wider and more powerful than F4, but still significantly slower than the other two

 

So we shouldn't really compare laptimes


Edited by balage06, 08 December 2020 - 13:46.


#14 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 14:02

Also there's potential tire differences. 



#15 balage06

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Posted 18 December 2020 - 11:03

ICYMI: W Series officially confirmed the 'first 18' drivers for 2021, could be further additions to the grid:

https://wseries.com/...e-up-announced/



#16 PayasYouRace

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Posted 18 December 2020 - 11:56

It's Chadwick vs Visser: Redux.



#17 Muppetmad

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Posted 18 December 2020 - 12:31

Yeah, I don't expect this season to be much different from 2019, although I hope Garcia (or somebody else) can prove me wrong.



#18 balage06

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Posted 18 December 2020 - 13:50

I think Kimiläinen could be the dark horse here, she was really strong last year, but also quite unlucky. Same could be said about Powell.



#19 Disgrace

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Posted 18 December 2020 - 14:09

Chadwick's advantage did wane quite a bit as the season went on last year. She might not necessarily be as strong this year.



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#20 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 18 December 2020 - 14:12

Yeah I was thinking her experience premium in this type of car would fade with time, but she spent 2020 racing for Prema in a similar car whereas the others did next to nothing. So while she was pretty ****, she was at least logging miles and basically testing a W Series car. 



#21 KWSN - DSM

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Posted 18 December 2020 - 14:19

Ayla Ågren could be in the mix, she actually won a season long series against male competitors - admittedly I have no idea how strong a F1600 series in the US is.



#22 balage06

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Posted 06 January 2021 - 16:15

Ira Sidorkova has just announced she will participate in F3 Asia this winter in preparation for the W Series season.

https://twitter.com/...850526013616128



#23 balage06

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Posted 13 January 2021 - 10:07

Pre-season test to take place in Valencia between April 26-30:

https://wseries.com/...ncia-announced/



#24 Rodaknee

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 02:14

After 18 months of their cars being stuck in storage. W-Series testing starts at the end of this week at the Anglesey Circuit.  They were going to test at Valencia at the end of April, but Covid caused issues.

 

There are currently 18 drivers taking part in the series, with 2 more places up for grabs.  I'm guessing they will be chosen over the coming weekend. Info on who is taking part isn't available.  I'm assuming publicity will start to flow fairly soon.

 

https://wseries.com/drivers/

 

They hope to hold 8 races during the year, all of them will be held as part of F1 GPs.  Fingers crossed all races will shown live FTA on Ch4 in the UK and YouTube elsewhere.

 

26 June Le Castellet, France

 

3 July Spielberg, Austria

 

17 July Silverstone, UK

 

31 July Budapest, Hungary

 

28 August Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium

 

4 September Zandvoort, Netherlands

 

23 October Austin, USA

 

30 October Mexico City, Mexico

 

https://wseries.com/


Edited by Rodaknee, 11 May 2021 - 02:15.


#25 frosty125

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 06:36

Looking forward to return of the w series. Great that it is part of the F1 weekend, It will raise the profile of the series massively.

#26 Ben1445

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 08:19

I still think exclusively supporting F1 races is far from an ideal arrangement so far as accessibility and reach is concerned, but I think that's not a short-term issue given the ongoing slow return of trackside spectators and that it should be offset by a (hopefully) strong free to air TV presence. Also, this could be seen as something of a recovery/restart year after the pandemic, of which F1 association should be something of a boost. 

 

But yeah, looking forward to it in all honesty. Wish we could see some racing from Anglesey. 


Edited by Ben1445, 11 May 2021 - 08:36.


#27 MrAerodynamicist

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 11:58

Russian Irina Sidorkova has said she's testing (via Twitter).

#28 Grayson

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 12:05

 

17 July Silverstone, UK

 

I knew that W Series would be supporting various Grands Prix this year but I didn't realise (or I forgot) that the British GP was one of those rounds. It's the only Grand Prix I'm going to this year (unless the international pandemic/travel situation suddenly becomes a LOT better) so I'm glad I'll get to see my first W Series race!

 

The schedule for Silverstone is looking pretty amazing - we're going to be able to watch F2, W Series and the first ever sprint race!

 

 

I still think exclusively supporting F1 races is far from an ideal arrangement so far as accessibility and reach is concerned

 

What do you mean?

 

I would have thought that having it as part of the F1 weekend would be superb for reach. People pay a lot more attention to F1 than any other form of motorsport. Having it act as an F1 support race means that the millions of people who are watching F1 will be told about it and reminded what time it is on a weekend where it fits around the sessions that they're watching. Not to mention the tens/hundreds of thousands of people at the track who will watch it because they're there anyway!


Edited by Grayson, 11 May 2021 - 12:13.


#29 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 12:09

I don't notice a lot of promotion or mention of the support action during F1 broadcasts? I think for W series a mix of supporting F1/GTs/WEC would be good as most of these drivers will have non-F1 careers so need to be exposed to other forms of racing and put in front of those teams.

 

But they're so deep in the hole financially they need that F1 halo to drive their marketing. I don't think they'll make their money by getting a % of a future F1 driver's earnings.



#30 Grayson

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 12:22

I don't notice a lot of promotion or mention of the support action during F1 broadcasts?

 

Admittedly I'm thinking of F2 and F3 rather than support races like the Porsche Cup...

 

Just thinking F2 last year, there were quite a few mentions of the results and the action during an F1 weekend. The BBC radio coverage and the Sky TV coverage would talk a lot about who had won races and how the championship was shaping up, as well as talking about how the racing had been, how the tyre wear had been, where overtaking took place, etc, in the context of whether something similar might happen in the F1.

 

Admittedly, last year's F2 season was a bit of a special case because so many of the races were ultra-exciting and because so many people wanted to hear how Mick Schumacher was doing... But the broadcasters are all trying to give more coverage to women's sport so I would be surprised if we didn't see a proper level of coverage/mention/promotion of W Series at the relevant races this year.



#31 Ben1445

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 13:10

What do you mean?

 

I would have thought that having it as part of the F1 weekend would be superb for reach. People pay a lot more attention to F1 than any other form of motorsport. Having it act as an F1 support race means that the millions of people who are watching F1 will be told about it and reminded what time it is on a weekend where it fits around the sessions that they're watching. Not to mention the tens/hundreds of thousands of people at the track who will watch it because they're there anyway!

It is a really good development, don't get me wrong. Racing at F1 events is a great thing for the very reasons you describe. I'm possibly in agreement with Ross there that it's among the best realistic options to get things back into action after a really badly timed pandemic and subsequent loss of momentum. It's just my hope that exclusivity isn't a long term direction. 

 

Having it's own free-to-air coverage is far, far more of a positive thing for me than being an F1 support in my opinion. To be most effective in its aims of influencing future interest and participation in the sport, it should also be reach beyond the existing fanbase, and that's what they get from having that coverage. If it was being brought into F1's exclusive broadcast access like F2/F3 I'd think it was a small disaster, for example. 

 

Part of my reservation is also that F1 is often expensive to attend, especially in the UK, and so having it support the British GP means an overwhelming majority of fans going to see it in-person would be, well, existing F1 fans. It's hard to imagine us hearing many stories of parents taking young girls just to see their newly acquired W Series heroes and then maybe also liking the other racing that was on that day as well (unless the parents were already into motorsport that is).

 

Another part of it is, like Ross says, it's far more likely that successful current W Series drivers can go on to get professional race seats in places like sportscars, GT racing etc. There's absolutely nothing wrong with that at all either - finding great sportscar drivers should be as valid a success as finding a potential F1 star, especially at this early stage of the whole project. As such, I think being present in those paddocks as well will help give the drivers better access to those opportunities as well as encouraging those paddocks to think about what more they can do to support women in motorsport. And you'd also get cheaper/more accessible options to go and see the racing in-person.

 

My general opinion is probably best described by saying, "supporting F1 is great, supporting a diverse range of motorsport events is better". 


Edited by Ben1445, 11 May 2021 - 13:13.


#32 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 13:17

I imagine the F1 supports helps some of the FTA TV deals though. I don't think being on F1 requires you to be part of the F1 broadcast deals? Unless Sky does something dickish like put them on their deal a la Porsche Supercup but no one ever watches. 



#33 Ben1445

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 14:01

I don't think being on F1 requires you to be part of the F1 broadcast deals? Unless Sky does something dickish like put them on their deal a la Porsche Supercup but no one ever watches.

Shouldn't do - Formula Regional European was watchable on YouTube this weekend despite supporting the Spanish GP. 
 

I imagine the F1 supports helps some of the FTA TV deals though.

Maybe. Though W series did have Channel 4 coverage when it was supporting the DTM, so it doesn't seem like it should be an issue. Channel 4 wasn't using it to compliment DTM coverage or anything - the point was that it is the W Series and that in itself is worth covering on their channel. Being a support event for F1 hardly changes that foundational point in my view. 



#34 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 14:04

I think it'd help seeing them on big tracks and big events. Give them a Sunday night TV package slot after the GP, etc

#35 Ben1445

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 14:09

I'm not sure I agree to be honest with you 



#36 balage06

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 14:13

FYI: I admit that the previous thread was probably a bit premature, but we started a brief discussion about the season here: https://forums.autos...-series-season/



#37 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 14:14

I'm not sure I agree to be honest with you

I think British GP weekend, TV wise, better sell than Assen

Probably why so much of their marketing and PR lines is around female F1 representation.

Edited by Ross Stonefeld, 11 May 2021 - 14:15.


#38 Ben1445

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 14:22

It'll be a bit of a weird set up for the rest of the season if/when Channel 4 is showing live W Series races but only highlights of the Grand Prix. 



#39 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 14:31

Put a highlights package on for post-GP slot? Use it as your lead in, you have a bigger audience that time of night anyways, etc. Live is great but who's watching junior level racing on a Saturday afternoon/Sunday morning? 



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#40 Ben1445

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 14:39

I would think that replacing live coverage with post-GP-highlights highlights package would be a pretty significant downgrade. 



#41 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 14:41

Why? It's a better TV slot and you have a good lead-in. Who's watching C4 on a Saturday afternoon? Or any TV that isn't something existing to pull you in, like major sport. W-Series has very little standalone value.



#42 HistoryFan

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 14:54

Most promising for me are Marta Garcia and Irina Sidorkova.



#43 Stephane

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 15:20

It was so good to be able to walk around th W padock in 2019. Now they are in the F1 bubble, that's gone.



#44 Ben1445

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 15:23

Why? It's a better TV slot and you have a good lead-in. Who's watching C4 on a Saturday afternoon? Or any TV that isn't something existing to pull you in, like major sport. W-Series has very little standalone value.

If there's a live race on and people want to watch it... they will watch C4 on a Saturday afternoon. They will either know about said race from watching previous races or seeing adverts in the week leading up and thinking 'oh that might be worth watching'. 

 

If 'nobody' is usually watching C4 at that time, isn't that just even more good reason to show it then and boost the time slot's attractiveness for ad revenue? 

 

By all means also run highlights packages in addition after a GP quali/race if you think it will help boost viewership for live events (and can get that past the TV schedulers in a more competitive time slot)... but I cannot see how a highlights package is ever going to be better than the live product. 



#45 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 15:32

You've got it backwards, no one is going to watch C4 because W Series is on. People will watch W Series because it's on C4. So a better timeslot and delayed or highlights coverage is better than live in a window people aren't watching. I admit I'm not a TV scheduler, but do you want to be live on ITV4 or BBC1 on Sunday night? 

 

Time slot is more valuable than your format. That's partly why they like races that are on in European primetime. Even with live events you get a much bigger audience at night.

 

Was there a time C4 Highlights were shared with other live F1 coverage, or just against Sky? I think C4 Highlights in the evening did pretty good ratings considering. 



#46 Ben1445

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 15:46

I mean, again, I disagree. 

 

But then I never can watch highlights and don't understand how people can, so maybe I'm just skewed here. 


Edited by Ben1445, 11 May 2021 - 15:47.


#47 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 15:59

I've got better **** to do on a summer afternoon than watch TV. Even stuff I like I watch later. I have so many options on viewing entertainment now they have to adjust to my schedule, in part because I have that option now. If the schedule was dictated to me completely, I'd have to fall in line. But I can record things or watch highlights or whatever else, so I can go mountain biking instead of watch a Grand Prix and then watch the race on my own terms. 

 

But even in a 'fixed' environment, for a series trying to grow, I think latching on to the F1 tv package is better than going it alone. More people and probably a more diverse audience would see you on Sunday night on C4 and F1 is a strong lead in. People who are already watching would give it a few minutes to see what it's like. I don't know how you capture that audience if they're out for a walk in the afternoon? 



#48 Rodaknee

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 16:08

FYI: I admit that the previous thread was probably a bit premature, but we started a brief discussion about the season here: https://forums.autos...-series-season/

Opps, sorry never found that before starting this.



#49 PayasYouRace

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 16:11

Topics merged.



#50 cpbell

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Posted 11 May 2021 - 16:13

 

Maybe. Though W series did have Channel 4 coverage when it was supporting the DTM, so it doesn't seem like it should be an issue. Channel 4 wasn't using it to compliment DTM coverage or anything - the point was that it is the W Series and that in itself is worth covering on their channel. Being a support event for F1 hardly changes that foundational point in my view. 

Agreed.  Do we kow whether any of these weekends clash with Britcar Endurance, as this would be a problem for Abbie Eaton who is doing the series for Praga this year?