Chadwick wins inaugural W Series championship


BRITAIN'S Jamie Chadwick secured the inaugural W Series championship after finishing fourth in a thrilling season finale at Brands Hatch. For all that she controlled the first few laps from the front, her closest pursuers, Powell and Finland's Emma Kimilainen, swept past her with unexpected ease, soon finding themselves nine seconds up the road.

Chadwick, 21, came fourth to beat the Netherlands' Beitske Visser by 10 points and win $500,000 (£415,000).

The final ten minutes proved dramatic, too.

"I'm under no illusions as to how tough it's going to get", she said after clinching the crown with fourth place in the season's final race.

She finished on the podium at five of the six races, winning in Hockenheim, Zolder and Misano.

Fifth was Fabienne Wolhwend, ahead of Vicky Piria and Jess Hawkins.

The race for third was between Chadwick and championship rival Beitske Visser.

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"To be the inaugural W Series champion is simply unbelievable".

"This year has been a whirlwind, and today's race was more intense than any other racing day I've ever had".

"The whole W Series experience has been incredible", added Chadwick. After that I just wanted to bring the vehicle home.

"I want to do as much as I overall aspirations are much greater than just this, than the W Series", she said. Obviously, each race has got bigger and better but coming here to Brands Hatch, my home circuit, well, I've simply never experienced anything like it.

'I definitely didn't make that easy for myself but, fingers crossed, we can take this on to bigger things'.

First-time victor Powell said: "The victory champagne tasted very, very good today. Whether that's personal or through sponsors or a team, none of them have paid their way scraping the barrel", she said. So I stayed patient and was pleased when I realized I had a pace advantage over Jamie.

"I think we've done that now and next year has got to be all about the drivers and telling the drivers' stories and introducing the personalities and characters". Then, when the Safety Car came out, I made the best restart of my life.