Puma in deal with motor racing's women-only W Series
The W Series, the first motor racing series launched exclusively for women, has signed a deal with Puma to be its official apparel partner for the inaugural 2019 season.
Under the terms of the agreement between Puma and series organiser the British Racing and Sports Car Club, Puma will supply flame-retardant racewear for all the championship’s drivers and reserve drivers.
The W Series, which was unveiled last October and will comprise six races this season, is meant to provide a showcase for women motor racing drivers. No woman has competed in Formula 1 since 1976, and the organisers believe the new championship is the best way to address the issue.
Puma is no stranger to motor racing, currently boasting deals with leading Formula 1 teams Ferrari, Mercedes and Red Bull, and also having deals in place with teams in Nascar, IndyCar and Formula E.
Dave Ryan, the W Series racing director, said: “Puma has an outstanding reputation for quality and technology, and that strongly complements our own mission – to achieve the highest standards of safety and performance for our drivers.”
Catherin Bond Muir, an experienced sports lawyer heading up the WSL, has said: “W Series drivers will become global superstars… and every organisation, every company, every sponsor… who helps W Series’ winners and champions achieve those ground-breaking successes will be able to celebrate.”
The W Series will use established Formula 1 circuits and feature single-seat cars identical to those in Formula Three.
It is so far restricted to Europe but assuming the 2019 season is considered a success is expected to expand to the Americas, Asia and Australia in subsequent years.
The W Series starts in Hockenheim, Germany on the weekend of 3 and 4 May, and will involve 18 female drivers competing for an overall prize fund of $1.5 million (including $500,000 for the eventual champion).