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F1 Academy: Calendar, teams, drivers, format, points system for all-female racing series | F1 News

F1 Academy is back for a second season and you can watch every race live on Sky Sports F1.

The last female driver to take part in an F1 weekend was F1 Academy managing director Susie Wolff for Williams at the 2014 British GP, when she took part in Practice One.

Lella Lombardi is the last driver to race in the Grand Prix itself, in 1976, and she’s the only woman to score points when she finished sixth at the 1975 Spanish GP.

F1 Academy creates a smooth transition from karting up the F1 feeder series ladder, with the possibility of a woman racing in F1 in the future.

What is F1 Academy?

F1 Academy was launched in November 2022 by Formula 1 with the aim of preparing and developing female drivers to enable them to progress to higher levels of competition.

The category is designed to “give more access to track time, racing and testing, as well as support with technical, physical, and mental preparations”.

It is hoped the F1 Academy will provide the experience to progress to Formula 3, and help Formula 2 and Formula 1 opportunities in the future.

Susie Wolff, the former Williams F1 development driver and last woman to drive in an F1 practice session, is leading the series as managing director.

Susie Wolff before practice ahead of the Formula 1 Las Vegas Grand Prix at Las Vegas Strip Circuit in Las Vegas, United States on November 16, 2023. (Photo by Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto)
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Susie Wolff was appointed the managing director for F1 Academy in March 2023

What happened in the inaugural season?

The inaugural F1 Academy season took place in 2023, with Prema driver Marta Garcia becoming the series’ first champion.

The Spaniard won seven races on her way to finishing 56 points clear of second-placed Lena Buhler in the standings.

Garcia has received a fully funded 2024 seat in the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine (FRECA), as has runner-up Buhler.

The highest British finisher in the inaugural season was Abbi Pulling in fifth, but it was 18-year-old Jessica Edgar who claimed the first race win by a Brit at the season finale in Austin.

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Highlights of the final round of the F1 Academy series in 2023, where Jessica Edgar became the first Briton to win a race in the inaugural series.

How are F1 teams getting more involved this year?

In addition to all F1 Academy races taking place exclusively on F1 weekends and being televised, live on Sky Sports, in 2024, the 10 F1 teams will each have a female driver representing them.

The liveries of all 10 F1 teams will be on the supported driver’s car, so you will see the colours of Red Bull, Mercedes, Ferrari, McLaren and more.

Increasing female involvement in all areas of motor racing, both on and off track, is a major goal of F1 and the governing body of world motorsport, the FIA.

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Lewis Hamilton was down at the track to congratulate F1 Academy champion Marta Garcia in Austin

Who are the drivers and teams?

F1 Academy features five teams – ART, Campos, Rodin Carlin, MP Motorsport and Prema – each entering three cars to make up a 15-strong grid.

All five teams also race in Formula 3 and Formula 2 and have pedigree for bringing through young talent: Lewis Hamilton and George Russell are ART alumni, Lando Norris was given his F2 debut by Campos before racing for Carlin, Charles Leclerc and Mick Schumacher both won the F2 title with Prema while MP Motorsport had 2022 F2 champion Felipe Drugovich.

There will be a new F1 Academy champion as 2023 winner Garcia has moved to Formula Regional, with a wide-open title race expected.

Britain’s Pulling and Edgar remain in the series with Rodin Motorsport, with sisters Hamda Al Qubaisi and Amna Al Qubaisi returning for a second year.

Some exciting names have joined F1 Academy for 2024 including Lia Block, the daughter of off-road motorsport icon Ken Block.

There’s plenty of intrigue around Mercedes junior Doriane Pin after she won a race at the United Arab Emirates Formula 4 series last month and will make her F1 Academy debut this year.

McLaren’s Bianca Bustamante and Ferrari’s Maya Weug are also names to look out for this season.

F1 Academy 2024 driver line-up

Driver Number Team Supporting F1 Team
Lola Lovinfosse 3 Rodin Motorsport
Abbi Pulling 9 Rodin Motorsport Alpine
Jessica Edgar 17 Rodin Motorsport
Emely de Heus 7 MP Motorsport *
Hamda Al Qubaisi 8 MP Motorsport Red Bull
Amna Al Qubaisi 88 MP Motorsport RB
Chloe Chambers 14 Campos Racing Haas
Carrie Schreiner 15 Campos Racing Sauber
Nerea Marti 30 Campos Racing
Bianca Bustamante 16 ART Grand Prix McLaren
Aurelia Nobels 22 ART Grand Prix **
Lia Block 57 ART Grand Prix Williams
Tina Hausmann 19 Prema Racing Aston Martin
Doriane Pin 28 Prema Racing Mercedes
Maya Weug 64 Prema Racing Ferrari

*Emely de Heus is a Red Bull Academy Programme member, but her entry is not supported by Red Bull

**Aurelia Nobels is a Ferrari Driver Academy member, but her entry is not supported by the F1 team

What car will they be driving?

F1 Academy will see all drivers race in identical cars – a Tatuus T421 chassis that is also used in Formula 4.

The cars are powered by turbo-charged engines supplied by Autotecnica and capable of 174 horsepower, while Pirelli will supply tyres.

The cars will have a top speed of 240 kph (149mph).

Bianca Bustamante will drive with a new McLaren livery in F1 Academy this season
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Bianca Bustamante will drive with a new McLaren livery in F1 Academy this season

F1 Academy 2024 calendar

F1 Academy is exclusively taking place at Formula 1 weekends this season with seven rounds, starting in Jeddah at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix from March 7-9.

Miami follows on May 3-5 before two European races on the weekends of the Spanish Grand Prix (June 21-23) and Dutch Grand Prix (August 23-25).

The tricky streets of Singapore is next on September 20-22 before back-to-back weekends in Qatar (November 29 to December 1) and the finale in Abu Dhabi (December 6-8).

F1 Academy 2024 Calendar

Race Track Date
1 Jeddah March 8
2 Jeddah March 9
3 Miami May 4
4 Miami May 5
5 Barcelona June 22
6 Barcelona June 23
7 Zandvoort August 24
8 Zandvoort August 25
9 Singapore September 21
10 Singapore September 22
11 Qatar November 30
12 Qatar December 1
13 Abu Dhabi December 7
14 Abu Dhabi December 8

F1 Academy weekend format

Each F1 Academy race weekend will feature five sessions of track action in a new format for 2024.

They will begin with a 40-minute practice sessions before qualifying later in the day. The fastest lap from each driver will determine the grid for Race 1, with the second fastest lap setting the grid for Race 2. Two points are awarded for each pole position.

Both races will be 30 minutes and the same scoring system as F1 will be used so the top 10 finishers score points: 25-18-15-12-10-8-6-4-2-1. An extra point will be awarded to the driver with the fastest lap, if they are classified inside the top 10.

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F1 Academy champion Marta Garcia discusses a memorable season and looks ahead to her future beyond the series.

What else has changed for 2024?

The top five drivers in the 2024 Drivers’ Standings will get FIA Super Licence Points.

In order to race in Formula 1, you need 40 Super Licence Points, meaning the F1 Academy can be a step towards a woman entering the top rank of motorsport.

The development is said to be recognition of “competition structure, commitment to driver development and the technical skills required to race in the series”.

The winner of the 2024 season will receive 10 Super Licence points, while the drivers in second and third place will collect seven and five points respectively. Three points will be awarded to the driver who classifies fourth, and the fifth placed driver will receive one point.

There will also be wild card entries at select races across its calendar, the Academy working with race promoters to identify talented young women from the host region and offer them wild card entry for a specific weekend.

At races at where there is a wild card entry, reigning team champions, Prema Racing, will operate the wild card car in addition to their three entries, and offer support and training to the selected driver. Wild Card entrants will be eligible to score points in the Drivers’ Standings.

Doriane Pin will race in the F1 academy in the 2021 season
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Doriane Pin will be a driver to look out for in F1 Academy this year

There has also been an update to the Sporting Regulations to state that drivers may only compete in two seasons of F1 Academy.

This rule has been introduced so that “every year there are opportunities for the most talented young women coming through the karting and single seater ranks to compete in the series”.

Susie Wolff said: “After a positive inaugural season, we are making two significant steps forward for 2024.

“The introduction of FIA Super Licence points is testament to the strength of F1 Academy’s on-track proposition and will help fuel our drivers’ progression as the move up the single-seater pyramid.”

Sky Sports F1’s live Saudi Arabian GP schedule

Wednesday March 6

  • 2.30pm: Drivers’ Press Conference

Thursday March 7

  • 9.50am: F2 Practice
  • 10.50am: F1 Academy Practice
  • 1pm: Saudi Arabian GP Practice One (session starts at 1.30pm)
  • 2.55pm: F2 Qualifying
  • 4.45pm: Saudi Arabian GP Practice Two (session starts at 5pm)
  • 6.15pm: F1 Academy Qualifying
  • 7.15pm: The F1 Show

Friday March 8

  • 11.55am: F1 Academy Race 1
  • 1.10pm: Saudi Arabian GP Practice Three (session starts at 1.30pm)
  • 3.05pm: F2 Sprint Race
  • 4.10pm: Saudi Arabian GP Qualifying build-up
  • 5pm: SAUDI ARABIAN GP QUALIFYING

Saturday March 9

  • 12pm: F1 Academy Race 2
  • 1.20pm: F2 Feature Race
  • 3.30pm: Saudi Arabian GP build-up: Grand Prix Saturday
  • 5pm: THE SAUDI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX
  • 7pm: Saudi Arabian GP reaction: Chequered flag
  • 9.30pm: Saudi Arabian GP highlights

Watch the second round of the new F1 season – the Saudi Arabian GP – live on Sky Sports F1 this coming week, with practice on Thursday, qualifying on Friday and the race at 5pm on Saturday. Stream every F1 race and more with a NOW Sports Month Membership for just £21 a month for 12 months

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