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Chris Graythen

F1 Academy champion to race in FRECA for 2024

An exciting update on Marta García...

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The first F1 Academy champion, Marta García, joins PREMA for the 2024 FRECA championship.

García after her win in Austin last weekend. Photo credits: Dan Isitene via Getty Images
García after her win in Austin last weekend. Photo credits: Dan Isitene via Getty Images

After winning seven races during the inaugural season of F1 Academy, Marta García secured the crown in Austin last weekend – winning the Championship with a 56-point advantage ahead of Lena Bühler.

F1 Academy was introduced last year with the initiative to provide a progression ladder for women and increase their participation in motorsports.

García is the first to take the next step in the ladder after it was announced she secured a seat in the FRECA series for next season. This move is a historical moment for F1 Academy and girls all over the world as it is the first step in having a more equal environment for women.

García on her new prospect

García, who raced with PREMA in 2023, will continue her partnership with the Italian team for 2024.

“So thrilled and excited to be racing in FRECA next year,” García began. “Coming from F1 Academy, it’s going to be a big step. We know we will have to work a lot with the team to succeed but I’m really determined to do well.

“I can’t thank F1 Academy enough. It is such a fantastic initiative, and it is the right way to do it, trying to take drivers with the best results to the top level. What an amazing opportunity, I’m looking forward to it and to the work that we have ahead, inside and outside the track.”

FRECA (Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine) is used as an in-between for F4 and F3. It provides an opportunity for young drivers to further develop their skills and prepare for FIA F3. García’s seat will be fully funded by PREMA, Pirelli and Tatuus.

PREMA team principal Rene Rosin praised the champion and expressed how happy he is to continue the partnership:

“We are really happy to continue working with Marta for 2024. We were really impressed by her approach and professionalism, and the progress she made throughout the year showed that she is ready to take the next chapter of her career.

“This step is also a great testament to the work done by F1 Academy in the development and promotion of young women talent in motorsport. The Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine is a challenging and competitive championship, but we think that Marta will be up to pace, and we will support her to get there as quickly as possible.”

New changes for 2024

Alongside the exciting progression, F1 Academy has laid out new initiatives and changes for the series. FRECA now have a deal with the series that top teams can add a fourth car to their team if they sign a driver who finishes in the top three in the F1 Academy standings. Furthermore, the current €150,000 entry fee that drivers must pay for their seat is being reduced to €100,000 to provide more openings for women.

This is a pivotal step forward for the series. With the 2024 season to be supporting F1 weekends and shown live on Sky Sports F1, more awareness and support are being given to create a more inclusive sport. As well as more coverage, all F1 teams have to support a driver in F1 Academy for 2024, with the driver representing the team and racing in their colours. Bianca Bustamante was the first woman to be confirmed as part of McLaren’s Driver Development just last week.

Featured image credits: Chris Graythen via Getty Images

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