After last month’s announcement of the exciting news that the W Series would support F1 through the 2021 season, further details have been revealed today. The entire calendar of the sport’s second (physical) season will take place on Formula One Grand Prix weekends. All events are at venues that are new to the W Series, too.
The 2020 W Series championship had to go virtual with iRacing thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. The 2021 calendar shows that it is bouncing back stronger than ever.
Supporting F1 was mentioned previously, but there was no indication if that would mean only at a handful of races as part of a wider W Series calendar. Now we know that all eight 2021 rounds will take place in partnership with F1.
The championship will kick off in late June at Paul Ricard in France. Just one week later, will see the Formula 3-level series move to the Red Bull Ring for the shortest track of the year. The Austrian venue is where F1 began its 2020 campaign at, with Valtteri Bottas setting a time of under 1 minute and 3 seconds in qualifying. The F3-spec cars won’t get that low, but shouldn’t be too far off.
Silverstone and the Hungaroring are the two follow-up events in July. A busy month for the W Series with three July races before the 2021 break. That month-long summer break marks the halfway point in the calendar perfectly, too, with four rounds being complete and four to go.
As the first half of the season has, it’s another back-to-back pair of races to mark the second half. The iconic Spa-Francorchamps at the end of August will see the drivers race through Eau Rouge (yes, and Raidillon) for the first time. W Series will then support Zandvoort’s return to the F1 calendar in 2021 on the first weekend in September.
And the big headline for the sport is that it will fly out of Europe for the very first time to have a final double-header in North America. The Circuit of the Americas in Texas comes first on the 23rd of October before a literal grandstand finish in Mexico. The 2019 season was entirely Europe-based making these last two rounds another landmark for the series.
The Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez in Mexico City features the standout baseball stadium final few corners. Should the W Series championship run to the final round, as it did in 2019, the 2021 champion will be crowned in front of a (Covid dependant) stadium full of fans. The Mexican Grand Prix homes one of the most impressive podiums on the modern-day F1 calendar and will be a fitting finale for the 2021 W Series.
W Series 2021 Calendar in full
26 June – Le Castellet, France
3 July – Spielberg, Austria
17 July – Silverstone, UK
31 July – Budapest, Hungary
28 August – Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium
4 September – Zandvoort, Netherlands
23 October – Austin, USA
30 October – Mexico City, Mexico