Girls on Track - Rising Stars: who are the second edition finalists
After the assessment tests at Circuit Paul Ricard, the names of the four finalists have been revealed. Here are the finalists of the second edition of the FIA Girls on Track – Rising Stars programme.
FIA Women In Motorsport and FDA revealed the eight female drivers that will advance to the next step of the Girls On Track – Rising Stars programme, as their get closer to a chance to gain support from Ferrari. The FIA Women In Motorsport Commission continued the selections to award the Girls On Track – Rising Stars second edition . The successful inaugural year of the programme saw up-and-coming talent Maya Weug being signed to the prestigious Ferrari Driver Academy and making her single-seater debut in the outstandingly competitive Italian F4, at the wheel of the Iron Dames Tatuus. The programme is aimed at increasing the female participation at grassroots levels in motor racing and has now reached the final stages of the 2021 selections. This year, the most talented ladies in the world of karting were divided in two separate age-classes: the Junior category for the drivers between 11 and 14 years of age, while drivers from 14 to 16 years of age were included in the Senior group. After a first selection out of 71 drivers, 28 advanced into the second step in October. Eight of them for each category continued their dreams in a further training camp. Both the Junior and Senior class participated in a training camp focused on driving technique, physical training and communication skills; the Junior entries also hit the track at Paul Ricard at the wheel of Praga karts for the first on-track assessment, while the Seniors had to wait a few days more for the final shoot-out, stepping in the Formula 4 cars. We then approached the decisive phase of the 2021 selections, with FIA and FDA Karting Scouting Camp and Formula Scouting Camp that proclaimed the final four of each category that will make the move in the November decisive training. After a four day Training Camp the Senior selected remaining are : Julia Ayoub, Victoria Blokhina, Laura Camps Torras and Clarissa Dervic.
Brazilian 16 year-old Julia Ayoub returned in the final stages after making it to the top-four last year as well, when she joined Maya Weug, Antonella Bassani and Doriane Pin at the Maranello training camp. Ayoub thus confirms herself as one of the most promising ladies around the world, ready to make the next step into formula cars. Among Julia's most successful karting experiences, she proved to be one of the fastest hopefuls on home soil when she was chosen by Birel ART and Richard Mille to take part in the 2019 FIA Karting season and raced on some of the best European tracks. 14 years old Victoria Blokhina is the youngest among the Seniors selected. The Russian lady took part in both the WSK Open Cup at Lonato and the WSK Final cup at Adria in the OK Junior class in 2019, before continuing her progress in the following season in the Super Master Series and Winter Cup.
In November 2020, she made the step up to OK at the Adria WSK Open Cup. In 2021, Victoria was a constant presence in some of the major karting competitions in Europe and continued her journey in Super Master Series, Champions Of Future, WSK Euro Series and the European Championship. Additionally, Blokhina had recently started testing in F4 machinery, preparing for the FIA selections. The selection of Spanish compatriots Laura Camps Torras and Clarissa Dervic proves once again that the Iberian country is home to some of the most promising female talents in the continent, also thanks to a vibrant karting scene. 16 year old Laura Camps Torras became a karting driver at the age of ten and has raced ever since. This year, Laura competed in the Spanish Championship with Faluga Racing team in the KZ class. In 2020, she claimed her main victory at the Valencian Karting Championship, at the Lucas Guerrero de Chiva International circuit. Clarissa Dervic is among the most exciting karting talents of the last couple of years and hopefully this will be her chance to make the next step in her racing career. Having shown her skills in the WSK and IAME Series, Clarissa had the chance to test a F4 car at Circuit Ricardo Tormo in 2020, with the support of Praga Motorsport and Formula de Campeones. It was an important experience for Dervic, which might have helped her confidence coming into the Rising Stars on track assessments. The four selected drivers in the Junior Class are Mexican 13 year old Ivanna Richards, Sweden's Milla Sjöstrand, Swiss racer Chiara Bättig and Maria Germano Neto from Portugal. Richards became the first ever girl to represent her country in a IAME International class in 2019. At only 11 years of age, Maria Germano Neto and Chiara Bättig are the youngest drivers in the short list and in contention for victory. A final training camp will see the four younger contenders battling for the opportunity to participate in a FIA International Karting Championship. Senior class members Clarissa Dervic, Victoria Blokhina, Julia Ayoub and Laura Camps Torras will take part in the final F4 Scouting Camp at the Ferrari Driver Academy headquarters in Maranello, aiming to follow in Maya Weug's footsteps for a chance to enter a 2022 F4 Championship as part of the FDA family.