Chadwick and Powell set to renew rivalry as W Series resumes at iconic Spa

W Series leader Jamie Chadwick and closest rival Alice Powell will resume rivalries as the ground-breaking series for women drivers only moves to the iconic Spa-Francorchamps circuit.

The battle for the title couldn’t be much closer as Chadwick leads Powell by just a solitary point after she beat her British compatriot to the chequered flag in Hungary last time out.

“My confidence is really high after winning the last race in Hungary and that gives me good momentum going into the second half of the year,” commented Chadwick in the W Series press release.

“The victory in Budapest felt like an important one. I had lost the championship lead at the previous round at Silverstone and knew that finishing behind Alice [Powell] again would make winning the championship a real challenge and force me to be very attacking in the second half of the year. So, to regain the championship lead and do it in the fashion I did was a real boost.”

The race at the legendary Spa-Francorchamps set in the rolling hills of the Ardennes will be a particularly special one this year, as the circuit celebrates its 100th anniversary. For race fans and drivers alike it is a particular favourite, legendary sections such as Eau Rouge, Pouhon and La Source testing driver skill and bravery to the max. That, allied to the unpredictable weather, will surely make this a race to remember.

For five of the 18 drivers, it will be a test never experienced before, the likes of Chadwick and Powell hoping their previous experience of the circuit will count heavily in their favour.

“I’ve not been to Spa since 2012 when I drove there in GP3, but it’s one of the best circuits in the world and I’m buzzing to race there again,” added Powell. “It’s such a unique circuit – it’s very long so there is lots of potential for gaining time, but you need to be bold because there are some really fast corners in second half of the lap.

“It makes for great racing because, as we saw in Hungary, it can be hard to follow in single seaters, but with the long straights at Spa you’re able to tow up to the back of people. That means that, even if you don’t have a great qualifying session, there’s potential to move forward and that element makes it one of the drivers’ favourite circuits.”

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Fraser Masefield

Sports news and features writer, web editor and author.