One day after Saudi Arabia saw the first three females to ever compete in a motor race vs. male counterparts, nine females in total took part in a Formula E Championship test on the same track in Ad Diriyah, Saudi Arabia.
All 11 Formula E teams took part in the test, with considerable attention on the nine female racers – many potentially looking at possible future opportunities in the series – who also took part in the test.
FIA Women in Motorsport Commission President Michele Mouton lauded the opportunity the female drivers were given by Formula E and its teams.
“It is great to see so many strong female drivers testing the new Formula E car,” Mouton said in a media release. “I strongly believe that in order to see the potential of the best women drivers in the world, they need to get a chance to drive with the best teams, which is exactly what is happening here.
“Through our FIA Women in Motorsport monitoring and assessment programs, we know that some of the best are here today. I hope that this initiative with Formula E can continue in the future and I can’t wait to get all the feedback from the drivers and teams.”
Female drivers that took part in the test included: IndyCar veteran Pippa Mann, Tatiana Calderon, Amna Al Qubaisi, Carrie Schreiner, Carmen Jorda Nissan e.Dams, Beitske Visser, Jamie Chadwick, Simona de Silvestro and Katherine Legge.
Calderon, who is also a test driver for the Alfa Romeo Sauber Formula One team, was the fastest female competitor and fifth-fastest overall in the full-day test.
“It’s fun being on the streets but you need to be very precise – you go a bit offline and you hit the wall quite easily,” Calderon said. “To be testing here in Saudi Arabia is incredible. I think the step they’ve taken to allow women to drive and to encourage more women to get into motorsport with such great teams is a really great initiative.
“I’m really happy to be a part of it and I hope that it leads to more opportunities and leads to more women in motorsport.”
Former Formula E driver de Silvestro was 10th fastest overall. De Silvestro previously drove for Andretti Autosport in the inaugural Formula E season in 2014/2015.
Mann also took part in the test. She had hoped to get more on-track time, but was still grateful for the opportunity given.