FIA World Endurance Championship, Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine, rally. Yet another weekend where the Iron Dames were at the heart of motorsport on all fronts.

The latest misadventure of the pink trio in the FIA WEC at Spa illustrates a highly competitive start to the season, in which results are unfortunately not yet forthcoming. But progress is steady and determination remains intact. There was also a promising trend for Doriane Pin and Marta Garcia in FRECA, who are off to an encouraging start in this fearsomely revealing championship. In rallying, Julie Amblard and Sarah Rumeau also continue to showcase their talents and potential.

FIA World Endurance Championship

The Iron Dames were on peak form around the historic Ardennes, Spa-Francorchamps being a true favourite for fans and drivers alike. From their superb pole position taken on Friday, Sarah and the team rocketed away at the beginning of the six-hour race.
Navigating Full Course Yellows and a lengthy Safety Car section, she was able to control the race at the front of the race for a long time before handing over to Rahel. The main battle in the race was with the #59 United Autosports McLaren, and the pair took turns in the lead but Rahel made a memorable move stick around the outside of Les Combes.
Both cars had lost out in the next pitstop window to the #91 Manthey EMA Porsche, but Rahel remained undeterred. At the penultimate pitstop, Rahel handed over to Michelle and she was just beginning to find her rhythm when a red flag was brought out for a big crash down the Kemmel Straight.
The #85 magenta car was positioned in fifth at the time, but all four cars in front all owed an extra pitstop. This meant that when the race resumed, Michelle was at the front but once more the #85 found itself in a battle with the #59 which the magenta car came out on top of.
However, there was once more heartbreak for the Iron Dames as a problem during the pitstop at the end of the race dropped them down the order. Despite their determination, there was not enough time to regain the lost ground and the crew had to settle for a heartbreaking fourth at the flag, which became fifth after a post-race penalty.
Increasingly fast and confident on the Lamborghini and with the support of Doriane Pin, the Iron Dames are now eagerly awaiting the 24 Hours of Le Mans, that is up next in June. They’ll be determined to reclaim the podium that eluded them this weekend in the Ardennes and last year in the Sarthe, where they led magnificently for most of the race.

French Rally Championship

Sarah Rumeau and Julie Amblard continued their rapid rallying progression at Rallye d’Antibes – Côte d’Azur with their first ever top-10 finish in the French Rally Championship.

Just one week after securing a fine seventh place in the French Gravel Championship, the Frenchwomen tackled some of the world’s most famous Tarmac stages including an iconic setting from the Monte Carlo Rally – Col de Turini – in the cockpit of their Ford Fiesta Rally2. 

Setting top-10 times all weekend long, Sarah was denied seventh place by an agonising 1.1 seconds but secured her best Tarmac rally result with eighth overall. 

The results place Sarah in the top 10 of the standings, becoming the first woman since 1995 to feature so high in the French Rally Championship standings.

Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine

Marta Garcia and Doriane Pin made remarkable steps at Hockenheim as the Iron Dames programme made its Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine debut at the German venue.

Lining up for one of the world’s most challenging junior single-seater championships, Doriane achieved two top 10s in group qualifying, showing potential for even higher results, while Marta stayed close to the pack as she also tried to gain as much experience as possible.

Doriane and Marta kept working in the races, improving their pace and racecraft in a new and highly-competitive environment. They fought hard in the middle of the group in both races, although multiple Safety Car situations prevented them from showing their full progress in Race 2.

The pair will return to FRECA action at Spa-Francorchamps on May 25-26, with the aim of continuing to build momentum.

Today we are not leaving the track with the result we deserve. It’s a very hard one to take and we are obviously disappointed. During the race we had the pace. It was good that we could show that the Lamborghini can do it, but we will have to come back and do better next time.

Sarah Bovy

I would still say that even though we were fourth, it was still a positive race. We learned a lot again. Sarah had an incredible start. Then the safety car came again, that’s the risk, we know it, it all melts down again. But we have self-confidence so we can never give up and keep fighting. Me too, I had great fights, it was fun to drive, we had a pretty good pace, I would say, all three did a great job.

Rahel Frey

It’s a disappointing result in the end, no podium. Everybody fought extremely well. Sarah was making again a huge gap to the front. Rahel maintained the gap, was overtaking, fighting for P1 and keeping the lead. When I got into the car I was also staying in front and keeping the lead. Unfortunately, an issue during the pitstop again had to ruin it. It’s very heartbreaking. It’s not fun anymore to have all this bad luck. We keep showing that we fight until the very end and so far, it didn’t pay off yet. It’s a hard one to swallow. We had a fast car, but again, no result.

Michelle Gatting


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