Jamie Chadwick - First competitive female driver in F1?

Jamie Chadwick - First competitive female driver in F1?

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Discussion

TheDeuce

13,917 posts

43 months

Monday 25th October 2021
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Peacockantony said:
HustleRussell said:
It is true that several Formula 1 drivers have leapt straight from regional Formula 3 to Formula 1, Lance Stroll being the latest example.
Stroll isn't exactly the norm though is he! He jumped into F1 with Williams because Lawrence Stroll bunged Williams a substantial amount of money, not because he earned it. His performances in F3* at the time were at least good enough to justify him going into GP2* so it isn't as if his he was undeserving though.

  • Or whatever the bleeding series were called at the time, I'm glad they simplified it. GPx Fx, you know what I mean.
Jamie isn't exactly the norm either though is she? Because if she had gone to Williams when Stroll did, she could be said to indirectly have been worth just as much to them commercially as Stroll was by his father directly bunging them the $$$

Obviously she can't go to F1 without the 40 points - but she probably is good enough to get the remaining 15 points required - there are several series she could stand to do well enough in to get the required points. That would then put her in a similar position to Stroll - not really good enough (at that time, he's improved since) to go to F1, certainly not proven enough for normal consideration.. but perhaps valuable to a down and out team for them to say yes for commercial reasons.

It would be hugely valuable commercially for F1 itself too, so although the powers that be can't directly influence driver selection, I'm sure they would smile upon any team that did bring a female driver on board.

carl_w

7,429 posts

235 months

Monday 25th October 2021
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Peacockantony said:
carl_w said:
f that's the case, why aren't there any women F1 drivers?
Because none of those who have tried have been good enough to make it to F1. The problem is that the best female racers are usually average compared to the peers around them at the time they're competing.
So why is this? Is there something about driving a single seater that makes men much more likely to be competent at it? Or is it because that a male dominated sport doesn't nurture female talent from the early days (karting)?

Peacockantony

164 posts

136 months

Monday 25th October 2021
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TheDeuce said:
Timing? If she's competitive enough and amasses the require SL points, an F1 team will take her - irrespective of age. A competitive female driver in F1 would be a massive PR boost and attract previously unreachable audiences and sponsors to the sport.

No ones going to worry she's a couple years older than ideal when that level of commercial value is linked to her.
Doubtful, even the PR for having a female driver wouldn't be enough to offset the negativity that would result from giving such an unsuitable driver an opportunity and it having poor results that were to be expected from an unprepared driver being dropped in the deep end. You would see a competetive midfield car end up at the back every race because the driver wouldn't be good enough.

The teams aren't dumb, they get the PR from having Calderon, Chadwick, Hawkins etc in made-for-PR roles so they can wheel them out for photo ops but in reality they will still pick the far more capable male racing drivers that will get better results to compete for them.

RacerMike said:
And why exactly is the jump any different for her than it would be for anyone else racing regional F3? Or Formula Renault for that matter (Kimi Raikonnen). There's a lot of indirect/unconscious sexism when it comes to women in motorsport, and you see a lot more comments about the 'step' being big or performing in a faster car being a 'completely different ball game'. Of course it is, but no one ever makes those comments about promising male drivers do they?

Jamie is easily quick enough to be good in an F1 car. I indirectly raced her in 2015 in British GT (she tended to be out at the same time as my teamate rather than me) and she was only a little bit off her teamate Ross Gunn despite being 16. Ross is out there now in ALMS winning races and Championships in the GTD class and is one of the fastest GT drivers out there, so she's easily got the pace to win, and even at 16 she was a mature head on young shoulders.
The jump is the same, most people just aren't foolish enough to make the suggestion. You don't see many suggestions that Grégoire Saucy should be given an F1 test or drive. Success in a low formula car such as Regional F3, especially low end series, does not make one good enough for F1. The only reason the suggestion is made about Jamie is because she is a woman.

The likes of Kimi are the exception not the norm, the overwhelming majority rise through the ranks and don't skip over a number of series. Those that do exhibit a far greater talent than Jamie has.

The 'indirect/unconscious sexism when it comes to women' in motorsport comes from the likes of yourself who want to treat them like children and give them greater opportunities just because they're women than a man would with the same results and abilities.

GT Racing is probably Jamie's future, because there is no shortage of evidence that she is a poor to average driver in single seater racing.

Leithen

8,441 posts

244 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
carl_w said:
Peacockantony said:
carl_w said:
f that's the case, why aren't there any women F1 drivers?
Because none of those who have tried have been good enough to make it to F1. The problem is that the best female racers are usually average compared to the peers around them at the time they're competing.
So why is this? Is there something about driving a single seater that makes men much more likely to be competent at it? Or is it because that a male dominated sport doesn't nurture female talent from the early days (karting)?
It is simply numbers. A small fraction of females have tried in comparison to males.

Any suggestion that subsequent sexism and misogyny doesn't exist, would make motorsport something of an outlier and more than a little unusual.

Peacockantony

164 posts

136 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
carl_w said:
o why is this? Is there something about driving a single seater that makes men much more likely to be competent at it? Or is it because that a male dominated sport doesn't nurture female talent from the early days (karting)?
It's all to do with quantity. There are far more male racing drivers than female racing drivers, most of them will be average with only a small number of them having what it takes to succeed to the top. The fact they are more male drivers means that is it more likely to be a man that suceeds to the top than a woman.

Why are there more men in racing than women? Ultimately because more men are interested in it to begin with, no amount of social engineering is going to alter that.

You can't seek an idealistic outcome to something that has an imperfect beginning. Does it matter that more men succeed in racing than women? No! Because success isn't owed, it is something you earn. The problem today is that small sections of society expects equitable outcomes even though they don't naturally occur and then cry as if something is wrong because of it.

In reality, the best racing drivers out there have probably never driven a car competetively in their lives or even had a desire to do so.

TheDeuce

13,917 posts

43 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
Peacockantony said:
TheDeuce said:
Timing? If she's competitive enough and amasses the require SL points, an F1 team will take her - irrespective of age. A competitive female driver in F1 would be a massive PR boost and attract previously unreachable audiences and sponsors to the sport.

No ones going to worry she's a couple years older than ideal when that level of commercial value is linked to her.
Doubtful, even the PR for having a female driver wouldn't be enough to offset the negativity that would result from giving such an unsuitable driver an opportunity and it having poor results that were to be expected from an unprepared driver being dropped in the deep end. You would see a competetive midfield car end up at the back every race because the driver wouldn't be good enough.

The teams aren't dumb, they get the PR from having Calderon, Chadwick, Hawkins etc in made-for-PR roles so they can wheel them out for photo ops but in reality they will still pick the far more capable male racing drivers that will get better results to compete for them.
This is where we differ then. I think they would get a net PR gain and that whilst it would be fantastic if the first (recent) female F1 driver was truly competitive, the fact of the matter is that simply isn't on the cards. There are no such female drivers identified as having that sort of potential anywhere close to F1 in terms of SL points.

You may be right... it might backfire. I personally think they would spin it well enough and that the masses would just love a female driver and that it would attract new sponsors and a new demographic of fans and viewers, regardless of performance.

If you don't agree with my perspective on that, then I fully understand why you think Jamie will never and should never be slightly cynically given the leg up in to F1.

TheDeuce

13,917 posts

43 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
Peacockantony said:
Why are there more men in racing than women? Ultimately because more men are interested in it to begin with, no amount of social engineering is going to alter that.
Formula W is essentially social engineering - it's designed to encourage more young girls to be interested in becoming racing drivers and thus getting them to beg their parents to get them down the local kart tracks...

I'm not convinced that will work to a meaningful degree. Even if it does, it's going to be a bloody long wait to find out! The first problem is that the current generation of parents are probably not all that inclined to send their 5 year old daughters off to clamber in to a kart and mix it up in session otherwise full of 5 year old boys. We kinda need the next generation of parents to be watching FW today and be motivated enough to push their future daughters in to karting as and when they show some interest in watching FW with Mummy...

And if that all works out as hoped, then in about 20+ years we will start to see more young women come up through the junior formulas and knock at the door of F3... And then a few years later perhaps enough will have tried for us to confidently say if it's ever going to be a successful initiative or not.

Hmm..

RacerMike

3,411 posts

188 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
Peacockantony said:
carl_w said:
o why is this? Is there something about driving a single seater that makes men much more likely to be competent at it? Or is it because that a male dominated sport doesn't nurture female talent from the early days (karting)?
It's all to do with quantity. There are far more male racing drivers than female racing drivers, most of them will be average with only a small number of them having what it takes to succeed to the top. The fact they are more male drivers means that is it more likely to be a man that suceeds to the top than a woman.

Why are there more men in racing than women? Ultimately because more men are interested in it to begin with, no amount of social engineering is going to alter that.

You can't seek an idealistic outcome to something that has an imperfect beginning. Does it matter that more men succeed in racing than women? No! Because success isn't owed, it is something you earn. The problem today is that small sections of society expects equitable outcomes even though they don't naturally occur and then cry as if something is wrong because of it.

In reality, the best racing drivers out there have probably never driven a car competetively in their lives or even had a desire to do so.
Whilst you’re right on many aspects, there is still a misogynistic aspect to the majority of this discussion, because the suitability or talent of a male driver winning an international motorsport championship, twice wouldn’t even begin to be questioned. It’s purely ‘because she’s a woman’ that it even gets brought up. If someone had started a thread about Lando 7 years ago when he’d finished 3rd in Ginetta Juniors, or when he raced in F3 and Formula Renault the year after, would there be the same comments of ‘well it’s a bit step up to international F3’ or ‘he’ll never make it to F1 no way. He’s far too small, he won’t have the stamina in the cars’.

I’m not even going to begin to suggest that Jamie is on the level of the Sennas, Verstappens or Hamilton’s, but she’s certainly more talented than a large proportion of drivers who race at an international level. I can’t really compare many of the grid in F1 as I’ve never raced against any of them, but I have raced in the same car (and Aston GT4) at the same events and can directly compare her performance against her team mates, and the rest of us in GT4 that year, and whilst Ross was definitely faster than her, there were plenty who weren’t. Any many of them have gone on to win races and win championships in various series.

Ultimately the issue is two fold.

1. The assumption that everyone who makes it to F1 is one of the top 22 fastest drivers in the world. They’re not. Maybe at most half the grid are. The other half could be replaced by probably 50-100 other drivers worldwide who are as quick if not quicker. And there are other guys out there who are as good as Lewis and Max who just didn’t make it to F1.

2. That being a woman means she can’t possibly be good enough to be fast and that she’s the best of a small pool.

I’m certainly not going to suggest she’s a the next 7 times world champion, but I don’t think Jamie would be big headed enough to ever even imply that. However she is quick enough for F1 and needless to say, being quick is not the single biggest factor. Marketability, teamwork, consistency and personality are all big factors. Oh. And money. And she has a good management team behind her to help with that.

df76

3,327 posts

255 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
TheDeuce said:
Peacockantony said:
TheDeuce said:
Timing? If she's competitive enough and amasses the require SL points, an F1 team will take her - irrespective of age. A competitive female driver in F1 would be a massive PR boost and attract previously unreachable audiences and sponsors to the sport.

No ones going to worry she's a couple years older than ideal when that level of commercial value is linked to her.
Doubtful, even the PR for having a female driver wouldn't be enough to offset the negativity that would result from giving such an unsuitable driver an opportunity and it having poor results that were to be expected from an unprepared driver being dropped in the deep end. You would see a competetive midfield car end up at the back every race because the driver wouldn't be good enough.

The teams aren't dumb, they get the PR from having Calderon, Chadwick, Hawkins etc in made-for-PR roles so they can wheel them out for photo ops but in reality they will still pick the far more capable male racing drivers that will get better results to compete for them.
This is where we differ then. I think they would get a net PR gain and that whilst it would be fantastic if the first (recent) female F1 driver was truly competitive, the fact of the matter is that simply isn't on the cards. There are no such female drivers identified as having that sort of potential anywhere close to F1 in terms of SL points.

You may be right... it might backfire. I personally think they would spin it well enough and that the masses would just love a female driver and that it would attract new sponsors and a new demographic of fans and viewers, regardless of performance.

If you don't agree with my perspective on that, then I fully understand why you think Jamie will never and should never be slightly cynically given the leg up in to F1.
She was supposed to do FIA F3 this season (2021), however, her pace in the Formula Regional series last autumn killed that chance off. Was clear that she wouldn't be competitive so made no sense for her to spend the cash, and the top teams wouldn't have taken her in any case. Hope she can step up in 2022, but any F1 opportunity is a long way off.

It's difficult to gauge how competitive W Series actually is.. but Abbi Pulling was nowhere in British F4 this season (her second year at that level) before bailing out mid season. She then rocks up in Austin and sticks the car on pole.

C70R

10,657 posts

81 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
Peacockantony said:
carl_w said:
o why is this? Is there something about driving a single seater that makes men much more likely to be competent at it? Or is it because that a male dominated sport doesn't nurture female talent from the early days (karting)?
It's all to do with quantity. There are far more male racing drivers than female racing drivers, most of them will be average with only a small number of them having what it takes to succeed to the top. The fact they are more male drivers means that is it more likely to be a man that suceeds to the top than a woman.

Why are there more men in racing than women? Ultimately because more men are interested in it to begin with, no amount of social engineering is going to alter that.

You can't seek an idealistic outcome to something that has an imperfect beginning. Does it matter that more men succeed in racing than women? No! Because success isn't owed, it is something you earn. The problem today is that small sections of society expects equitable outcomes even though they don't naturally occur and then cry as if something is wrong because of it.

In reality, the best racing drivers out there have probably never driven a car competetively in their lives or even had a desire to do so.
There's an interesting counterpoint to this, that provokes some uncomfortable conversations.

Netball in NZ is the biggest female sport bar none. The Silver Ferns are one of the best teams in the world, and at home their brand is equivalent to the All Blacks men's rugby team.

Investment in the game (the internationals are all full-time pros) and talent pathways are both significant, meaning that they are identifying and developing the absolute best of the best female athletes.

Meanwhile, NZ men's netball is an amateur game, not even in the top 10 by participation numbers in a country with only 5m people.

Yet when the Silver Ferns (regularly) play matches against the NZ men's team behind closed doors, they invariably lose.

This would be easy to understand if we were talking about a contact sport, where physical 'dominance' was key to success. However, netball's rules specifically discourage contact - you can't "snatch" the ball from an opponent, and you need to stand 3ft away in defence.

Netball is a game of physical endurance/fitness and skill.

What does this tell us? Maybe nothing?
Maybe also that men are genetically (or culturally) better-suited to physically demanding sports (like F1)?

Edited by C70R on Monday 25th October 18:31

C70R

10,657 posts

81 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
RacerMike said:
I can’t really compare many of the grid in F1 as I’ve never raced against any of them
The biggest issue with this leap of logic is that you can compare her directly with the F1 driver who's currently placed 21st in a 20-driver season. And he beat her in the last season they raced together in similar metal.

I'm a fan of Jamie's and would love to see a woman be successful in F1. I just don't think it's going to be her.

Phil Dicky

7,054 posts

240 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
End said:
FourWheelDrift said:
I've posted this before, but we could have had a competitive female driver in F1 a few years ago - https://www.motorsportmagazine.com/articles/single...
Thanks for posting that ,had never heard of her before , a tragically short life .frown
An interesting and very sad read.

TheDeuce

13,917 posts

43 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
df76 said:
TheDeuce said:
Peacockantony said:
TheDeuce said:
Timing? If she's competitive enough and amasses the require SL points, an F1 team will take her - irrespective of age. A competitive female driver in F1 would be a massive PR boost and attract previously unreachable audiences and sponsors to the sport.

No ones going to worry she's a couple years older than ideal when that level of commercial value is linked to her.
Doubtful, even the PR for having a female driver wouldn't be enough to offset the negativity that would result from giving such an unsuitable driver an opportunity and it having poor results that were to be expected from an unprepared driver being dropped in the deep end. You would see a competetive midfield car end up at the back every race because the driver wouldn't be good enough.

The teams aren't dumb, they get the PR from having Calderon, Chadwick, Hawkins etc in made-for-PR roles so they can wheel them out for photo ops but in reality they will still pick the far more capable male racing drivers that will get better results to compete for them.
This is where we differ then. I think they would get a net PR gain and that whilst it would be fantastic if the first (recent) female F1 driver was truly competitive, the fact of the matter is that simply isn't on the cards. There are no such female drivers identified as having that sort of potential anywhere close to F1 in terms of SL points.

You may be right... it might backfire. I personally think they would spin it well enough and that the masses would just love a female driver and that it would attract new sponsors and a new demographic of fans and viewers, regardless of performance.

If you don't agree with my perspective on that, then I fully understand why you think Jamie will never and should never be slightly cynically given the leg up in to F1.
She was supposed to do FIA F3 this season (2021), however, her pace in the Formula Regional series last autumn killed that chance off. Was clear that she wouldn't be competitive so made no sense for her to spend the cash, and the top teams wouldn't have taken her in any case. Hope she can step up in 2022, but any F1 opportunity is a long way off.

It's difficult to gauge how competitive W Series actually is.. but Abbi Pulling was nowhere in British F4 this season (her second year at that level) before bailing out mid season. She then rocks up in Austin and sticks the car on pole.
I actually didn't know she was penned for F3 this season before her regional series struggles - thanks for that.

I would say that this season in FW she was stronger than 2019, so still evolution and growth, She also wasn't terrible in the regional series back then, she was average.. So perhaps she could do better now if she attempted that again, or.. even F3..

We should all avoid writing her off at least until she's stopped showing signs of improving as a driver.

angrymoby

1,835 posts

155 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
if women (well any minority really) dont feel like they belong or are welcome in F1 they wont gravitate towards it

it really is that simple ...but the solution is far from simple, or easy

Sandpit Steve

5,849 posts

51 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
angrymoby said:
if women (well any minority really) dont feel like they belong or are welcome in F1 they wont gravitate towards it

it really is that simple ...but the solution is far from simple, or easy
Indeed. It’s definitely a long term project, which starts with girls and parents watching WS and getting excited about racing cars. It may be that the first few ladies to graduate from WS don’t advance much further, but that’s fine. Eventually one lady will do well enough in the higher championships to make the jump to F1.

In recent seasons we have seen Tatiana Calderon race in FIA F3 and F2, and Sophia Floersch was in F3 last year. There were a couple of other ladies racing in American Indycar this year. Getting two or three ladies into FIA F3 should be the first goal, and if they keep doing that then eventually they’ll find someone competitive enough to move up. It’s a numbers game, and the more 8 year old girls who start karting this year, the more 18 year old ladies we’ll have to choose from a decade from now.

I’ve long said that F1 want three drivers - an American, a Chinese and a woman - they’re primarily a marketing company and want the most diverse group of drivers possible to sell their championship. Lewis has attracted a whole new audience over his time in a sport that was considered a rich white man’s sport not too long ago. As soon as someone is good enough to make the grade, they’ll snapped up by an F1 team.

It was good to see arguably the most successful living woman driver, Danica Patrick, at Austin, even if she is much less well known outside the States.

TheDeuce

13,917 posts

43 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
Sandpit Steve said:
angrymoby said:
if women (well any minority really) dont feel like they belong or are welcome in F1 they wont gravitate towards it

it really is that simple ...but the solution is far from simple, or easy
Indeed. It’s definitely a long term project, which starts with girls and parents watching WS and getting excited about racing cars. It may be that the first few ladies to graduate from WS don’t advance much further, but that’s fine. Eventually one lady will do well enough in the higher championships to make the jump to F1.

In recent seasons we have seen Tatiana Calderon race in FIA F3 and F2, and Sophia Floersch was in F3 last year. There were a couple of other ladies racing in American Indycar this year. Getting two or three ladies into FIA F3 should be the first goal, and if they keep doing that then eventually they’ll find someone competitive enough to move up. It’s a numbers game, and the more 8 year old girls who start karting this year, the more 18 year old ladies we’ll have to choose from a decade from now.

I’ve long said that F1 want three drivers - an American, a Chinese and a woman - they’re primarily a marketing company and want the most diverse group of drivers possible to sell their championship. Lewis has attracted a whole new audience over his time in a sport that was considered a rich white man’s sport not too long ago. As soon as someone is good enough to make the grade, they’ll snapped up by an F1 team.

It was good to see arguably the most successful living woman driver, Danica Patrick, at Austin, even if she is much less well known outside the States.
It's good there has been a slim but steady stream of female drivers finding their way to F3. A shame none have been particularly successful thus far.

I would be interested to know how many male drivers sought entry to F3 in the recent years vs female. I'm talking about how many courted talent spotters, wrote letters to potential team driver programmes or sponsors, offered to part fund etc.

As it is we have no idea of the ratio. Is it that we haven't got fast female F3 drivers because of an inherent lack of ability, or is it because we've only had a handful ever get within sniffing distance vs several hundred male?

Dr Jekyll

22,690 posts

238 months

Monday 25th October 2021
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To get to a high level in motor racing you not only have to be talented. You also have to be among that section of the population that is obsessive about what they want to do that it verges on the unhinged, or at least unbalanced. Such people do seem to be disproportionately male.

Sandpit Steve

5,849 posts

51 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
TheDeuce said:
It's good there has been a slim but steady stream of female drivers finding their way to F3. A shame none have been particularly successful thus far.

I would be interested to know how many male drivers sought entry to F3 in the recent years vs female. I'm talking about how many courted talent spotters, wrote letters to potential team driver programmes or sponsors, offered to part fund etc.

As it is we have no idea of the ratio. Is it that we haven't got fast female F3 drivers because of an inherent lack of ability, or is it because we've only had a handful ever get within sniffing distance vs several hundred male?
Yes, it would be interesting to get some numbers. Let’s start with the ratio of boys and girls with karting licences, entering regional and national championships, moving into cars in the established feeder series etc. then we can look at your criteria such as drivers marketing themselves for opportunities.

The biggest issue, for both boys and girls, is as always getting sponsorship, and it’s notable that there’s still a few pay-drivers hanging around F1, it’s just that they now have to work their way up and do well in other championships. The likes of Stroll and Mazepin had thousands of hours in single seaters, they were testing their F3 cars and even F1 cars on hired tracks, as many of their competitors were hitting up sponsors and worrying about the cost of flights and hotels. Looking around the F3 and F2 grids, there’s an awful lot of familiar surnames there, so a good contact book is very important to getting on the grid in the first place.

There’s no easy solutions, but if WS can inspire a few more girls to turn up at their local kart track next season, and a few teenagers to apply for WS over the winter, then that’s a good thing.

Bo_apex

1,642 posts

195 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
angrymoby said:
if women (well any minority really) dont feel like they belong or are welcome in F1 they wont gravitate towards it

it really is that simple ...but the solution is far from simple, or easy
It's also true that societies are not flat, but rather different groups enjoy a range of different interests & activities.

Not everyone is interested about driving around in circles or passionate about bull§hit FIA regulations






Milkyway

3,506 posts

30 months

Monday 25th October 2021
quotequote all
Sounds like Jamie will take her money & FIA licence points.
It will be interesting to see how Abbi Pulling does in a full season in 2022.
She was very impressive @ COTA... & a youngster too.
Alice will return, but....Mmmmmm