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Formula E

F1 Academy champion gets Formula E test debut

by Alice Holloway
3 min read

until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League

The first F1 Academy champion Marta Garcia will make her Formula E test debut with ERT in next month’s Berlin rookie test, ensuring that a female driver takes part in one of the annual sessions for the first time in three years.

Garcia will join touring car ace Mikel Azcona in running for the British-based Chinese team. The 23-year-old will also be at this weekend’s Monaco E-Prix to immerse herself in the all-electric world championship.

Garcia will undergo simulator sessions at the team's Silverstone base prior to the Berlin test, where she will drive either Dan Ticktum or Sergio Sette Camara’s car during the six hours of available in-season testing.

Speaking exclusively to The Race, Garcia said that the ERT test was “another opportunity, another kind of racing that I always wanted to try”.

“The growth in the championship has been huge so I’m happy to try the car, test it, work with the team and also try to get to know much more things about the championship, how everything works, and get the knowledge to make the best out of it,” said Garcia.

Garcia, previously a Renault F1 junior, won the first season of F1's new all-female series and earned a step up to the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine for 2024, where she'll drive for the Iron Dames team alongside Mercedes protege and winner of the first race of the 2024 F1 Academy season Doriane Pin.

Garcia's presence in Monaco this weekend will include having a seat fitting and spending time with the ERT squad, including learning from its race drivers.  

“I will be on the debriefs of the drivers after every session and just trying to understand being with the engineers, trying to understand how the car works, just to get ready for the testing that we have in Berlin,” Garcia confirmed.

“For me, there’s no big expectations [in Berlin]. 

“I’m racing in Formula Regional this year and there’s probably some plans ahead too.

"The test is a really good opportunity for me to drive the car, to understand, to see how it is.”

Garcia will be hot-footing it from FRECA's 2024 season opener at Hockenheim, which concludes on May 12, in time for the test on May 13.

She was receptive to the idea of racing in Formula E in the future, saying: “If there is the opportunity for me to race in Formula E I think, why not? 

“It could be good for me to be able to drive Formula E in the next few years, to race there, because it’s a competitive championship and I think it would be good.

“First, let’s see how the car is, let’s get to know everything, and then if it has to happen it will happen.”

Former W Series rival could join Garcia

There could be two women on the 22-driver test entry list for Berlin, as Envision Racing’s test and development driver Alice Powell - who raced against Garcia in W Series - is now eligible to drive in the test after the regulation for inclusion was changed recently.

Envision is believed to be close to confirming its two drivers for the test, which will take place on May 13.

Drivers are eligible to take part if they haven't raced in an official Formula E race weekend.

Others confirmed already for the Tempelhof test are Formula 2 races Jak Crawford (Andretti) and Dennis Hauger (Porsche), who will partner 2023 DTM champion Thomas Preining.

Maserati MSG is known to be talking to Aston Martin F1 reserve Felipe Drugovich to undertake a third test for it after appearances in Berlin and Rome last season.

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