Williams tester Wolff is close yet still so far

Tue May 5, 2015 9:14pm EDT
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

By Alan Baldwin

LONDON (Reuters) - Susie Wolff will be back at the wheel of a Williams Formula One car in Barcelona on Friday with little in the way of fanfare but a clear aim in mind.

Last year, the 32-year-old Scot made plenty of headlines in a similar practice session at Silverstone when she became the first female driver in 22 years to take part in a Grand Prix weekend.

This time, her presence at the Circuit de Catalunya comes 40 years after the only F1 race in which a woman has finished in the points -- Italian Lella Lombardi's sixth place at the shortened 1975 Spanish Grand Prix..

If Wolff has made it less of a novelty to see a woman on track along with the men in F1, at least on a Friday, her dream of becoming the first woman grand prix racer since 1976 remains tantalizingly out of reach.

"I have performed in the car, I have shown I am capable, I’m in a very competitive team, I drive a car which is capable of podium positions," she told Reuters in an interview before heading to Spain.

"So I do feel very, very close but in the same respect very far away.

"Because when they announced (Adrian) Sutil as the reserve at Williams, that was a clear sign that ‘Yes, you’re close but you are also still very far away’."

Williams started the season without a reserve but with Wolff, whose husband Toto is head of Mercedes motorsport and a Williams shareholder, as development driver with young Briton Alex Lynn.   Continued...

File photo of Williams Formula One driver Susie Wolff of Britain after her car broke down during first practice ahead of the British Grand Prix at the Silverstone Race Circuit, central England, July 4, 2014. REUTERS/Phil Noble