Filipino racer misses spot in Ferrari Driving Academy scholarship

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 26) – Rising Filipino race car driver Bianca Bustamante missed a chance for a scholarship in the prestigious Ferrari Driving Academy.

The 16-year-old Bustamante is one of 14 young female kart racers who took part in the senior category of the 2021 Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) Girls on Track Rising Stars program over the weekend.

During the first round of the shootout, Bustamante struggled with her pace within the allotted testing time.

She also used a new race engine type and a soft tyre compound while racing at the famed Circuit Paul Richard - the venue of the Formula One French Grand Prix.

"There are so many positives and learnings that I will take with me as I continue my racing career. I learned how to optimize my driving and of course how to adapt to the given condition," said Bustamante.

Only eight female drivers were selected to the next round of the FIA-backed young drivers' initiative aimed at inspiring women to participate in motorsports.

Bustamante, the only Asian driver in the 14-woman field, also received training and invaluable insights at the Winfield Racing School and attended workshops prepared by internationally renowned driver performance center 321 Perform.

"The road to F1 is long and I am very confident that I will see them again in the near future - and hopefully compete alongside them," said Bustamante, as she expressed her gratitude for the chance to be part of the FIA Girls On Track Rising Stars program.

The Filipino racing wunderkind recently bagged six awards at the 17th Golden Wheel Awards, including the 2019 National Senior Karter of the Year and 2019 International Junior Karter of the Year trophies.