Powell battles back for W Series win at Silverstone

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Powell battles back for W Series win at Silverstone

International Racing

Powell battles back for W Series win at Silverstone

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Alice Powell (Racing X) won a dramatic third race of the W Series season at Silverstone to regain the championship lead in front of her home fans.

The 28-year-old Briton started from pole position, but having lost the lead on the opening lap, she recovered to pass Fabienne Wohlwend (Bunker Racing) in the closing stages and take her second victory of the season, having won the opening round in Austria last month. Powell finished two seconds clear of Wohlwend as defending champion Jamie Chadwick (Veloce Racing) completed the podium.

“It’s an amazing feeling to win on home soil. I’ve experienced lots of British Grand Prix weekends but never from this side and I want to thank every single fan out there for the amazing support,” said Powell. “To race and win in front of this crowd is the stuff that dreams are made of and it was extra special to have my family here to see it.

“It wasn’t the best of starts for me, I got a bad launch and was behind Fabienne. But I knew I had the pace and was faster, and luckily she made an error which let me sneak through and I managed to bring it home from there.”

Emma Kimilainen (Ecurie W), Nerea Marti (W Series Academy Team) and Beitske Visser (M. Forbes Motorsport) were fourth, fifth and sixth respectively. British quartet Sarah Moore (Scuderia W), debutant Abbi Pulling (PUMA W Series Team), Abbie Eaton (Ecurie W) and Jessica Hawkins (Racing X) completed the top 10, meaning all six British drivers scored points in their home race.

Wohlwend made a fast start from second on the grid and went wheel-to-wheel with polesitter Powell before taking the lead at Village. Visser — who had an engine change before the race — was slow away from the second row and dropped to seventh at the end of lap one, promoting Kimilainen, Marti and Moore by one place each.

Wohlwend and Powell traded fastest laps to pull three seconds clear of Chadwick in third with 20 minutes left, and the leading pair were separated by just six tenths of a second at the halfway stage. Further back, Eaton overtook Belen Garcia (Scuderia W) for ninth on the inside at Vale after a prolonged wheel-to-wheel battle.

Having stalled on the grid, Miki Koyama (Sirin Racing) stopped at Village to bring out the safety car with 11 minutes remaining. There were less than eight minutes left on the clock when the safety car period ended, and Powell regained the lead three minutes later when Wohlwend ran wide at Club, allowing Alice through on the inside.

Powell dipped a wheel into the gravel at Luffield to keep Wohlwend in contention, but the Briton held on to make it back-to-back victories on home soil, having won the last W Series race to be contested in Britain at Brands Hatch in August 2019.

Moore and Visser went side-by-side for several corners and Visser eventually came out on top to take sixth with less than a minute to go. That put Moore under pressure from Eaton but Sarah held on, while behind them Belen Garcia and Hawkins made contact on the final lap.

With five of this season’s eight rounds remaining — round four is at Hungary’s Hungaroring on July 31 — Powell leads Chadwick by six points. Moore is a further 12 points back in third and Wohlwend is fourth on 34 points after scoring her best series finish to date and her second podium of the season.

 

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