Jamie Chadwick will have the opportunity to be crowned W Series champion this weekend as the tournament arrives in the US for the double-header finale.
As it stands, the reigning champion is tied on 109 points with fellow Briton Alice Powell – something that has never been seen before in the championship.
The final two races at the Circuit of the Americas will be make or break tests for the two drivers, who cannot afford any mistakes in their performances.
“It’s so exciting to have this neck-and-neck battle going into the last two races and obviously with the double header that makes it a little bit more suspenseful,” Chadwick told GiveMeSport Women.
“It’s great to have this level of competition and I’m looking forward to getting there with all guns blazing to try and get the title.”
Chadwick admitted this is the first time she’s ever experienced such a closely contested title race. In 2019, she enjoyed a smooth ride to the inaugural W Series title, finishing the tournament with 110 points, ten ahead of runner-up Beitske Visser.
Powell finished third overall, with 76 points for the season. But this year, it’s been a completely different experience.
The comeback from disappointment in Austria
The opening race in Austria was far from an ideal start for the reigning champion, who struggled with engine faults in the qualifiers. During the race, Chadwick ended up at the rear of the pack after a collision, but managed to pull back a P6 finish.
“It was not how I anticipated the season,” she reflected. “I think we got very lucky that after the carnage that unfolded, we managed to get sixth. I was still disappointed with that in retrospect, because that could have been a really important result given how close it is now.”
Since the first race, Chadwick has made it onto every podium and won two of the six races so far. Her work ethic to come back from a shaky start just proves how much a strong mentality is important in motorsport.
However, car troubles and mechanical issues can cause problems for any driver on the day. With just eight races in the series, Chadwick stressed how much pressure can mount in such little time.
“It puts a bit more emphasis on any bad results you get because every race counts and anything can happen. I’ve been fortunate aside from the first race – I’ve not had any issues that have stopped me from competing or anything like that, but that could easily happen at COTA.”
That’s the championship, anything can happen in motorsport.
Challenging Alice Powell
This year has been a poster season for women’s motorsport and British drivers.
Chadwick and Powell have battled hard since the start of the term and the race for title is going to go right down to the very last lap of the series.
The reigning champion paid homage to her compatriot and title rival, who recently hailed Chadwick for her “raw speed” in another GiveMeSport Women exclusive.
“Alice is obviously super strong,” Chadwick said. “She was always going to push me this season, she was a bit unfortunate in 2019 so it’s great to have her up and fighting me so closely this season.
“She’s proved all year she’s a fantastic racer – she’s always there, week in, week out. From my side, she’s not made my life easy unfortunately, but it’s great to have that kind of competitive nature in the championship.”
The Veloce Racing star said there are no “blurred lines” in what she needs to do to finish top of the standings in two weeks’ time. Achieving back-to-back titles is something Chadwick has full belief in.
“Having already done it once, I feel really confident we can do it again. I feel like we’ve shown really good pace this year and I definitely think we should be rewarded by that.
“Hopefully in the last weekend we can finally put things together and make it back-to-back titles.”
The first race of the W Series double-header finale will take place on Saturday, October 23rd, followed by the eighth and final race the following day. Both races will be available to watch live in the UK on Channel 4.