Hockenheim W Series: Chadwick fends off Powell in opener
Reigning MRF champion Jamie Chadwick took victory in the inaugural W Series race at Hockenheim, completing a clean sweep of a weekend in which she topped every session.
Chadwick started the race - held in damp but drying conditions - from the pole after impressing in a wet qualifying where she eclipsed the rest of the field by a margin of almost two seconds.
Starting on older, worn tyres, Chadwick led from the line but ran wide on the exit of the hairpin while under pressure from Sarah Moore.
Moore assumed the lead, before Megan Gilkes and Emma Kimilainen - who was out of position after a stalled start - collided at the hairpin and bought out the safety car.
Fabienne Wohlwend - who had lined up alongside Chadwick in second - also suffered a poor start after wheelspin which dropped her back down the grid.
With the field regrouped under the safety car, Chadwick took the lead from Moore at the restart, with former GP3 driver Alice Powell also joining the fray and overtaking Moore for second a lap later.
Despite an almost race-long challenge from Powell, Chadwick extended a small but steady lead and took the chequered flag to complete a dominant first weekend in the series and assume lead of the championship.
Powell spent the second half of the race battling with 18-year-old Marta Garcia, who made her return to single-seater racing this weekend to complete the podium.
Beitske Visser ended the race in fourth, ahead of Moore who despite several attempts could not make a move stick and crossed the line in fifth, successfully defending from a recovering Wohlwend.
Miki Koyama had an impressive race to finish seventh, scything her way through the field from 17th on the grid. Behind her in eighth was Tasmin Pepper - who also starred in an impressive drive from 16th.
Gosia Rdest made one place up to finish ninth, while Australian Caitlin Wood completed the top 10.
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|Drivers||Alice Powell , Jamie Chadwick , Marta Garcia|