Sarah Moore: W Series history-maker proud to be at forefront of LGBTQ+ inclusivity

HARROGATE’S Sarah Moore believes that inclusivity within motorsport is on the right track after she made history last month by becoming the first openly gay LGBTQ+ driver to stand on a podium during a Grand Prix weekend.

HISTORY MAKER: Sarah Moore became the first openly gay LGBTQ+ driver to stand on a podium during a Grand Prix weekend last month as she targets more success as Silverstone today. Picture: Getty Images.

The 27-year-old will be on the circuit at Silverstone today for the third race of the W Series season, aiming to build on a strong start to the year. Every race of the W Series – which first launched at the end of 2018 – this year will be alongside Formula 1 at eight Grand Prix weekends.

Moore has enjoyed a fine start to the season, finishing second at the Red Bull Ring in Austria in round one before following that up with a fourth-placed finish at the same track.

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Her podium finish came in Pride Month and she hopes her history-making moment can help others within the LGBTQ+ community feel more comfortable with who they are.

HISTORY MAKER: Sarah Moore, left, became the first openly gay LGBTQ+ driver to stand on a podium during a Grand Prix weekend last month as she targets more success as Silverstone today. Picture: Getty Images.

“I definitely think it is going in the right direction. I am an ambassador for Racing Pride and we work on promoting inclusivity within the sport and support people outside of the sport who do approach us,” she said.

“It has definitely improved over the past five years. Before that, I didn’t personally pay too much attention to it. Unfortunately, we are still going to get a minority who still don’t agree and those that post negative comments. As long as we keep getting more people on board and more people to understand, then we will continue to go in the right direction.”

She continued: “Pride Month gives it an extra push but in my opinion it needs to be promoted all year round, it is the reason why I am an ambassador and the reason I am involved with Racing Pride. I have the rainbow quite prominently on my new helmet.

“With my second-placed finish in Austria, that was during Pride Month. I didn’t realise at the time but I was the firstly openly gay LGBTQ+ driver to stand on a podium during a Grand Prix weekend. I felt more happy for everyone else in the community than for myself. I am happy with the person that I am, I am happy I can help everyone else by using my profile that I am lucky enough to have.”

HISTORY MAKER: Sarah Moore, right, became the first openly gay LGBTQ+ driver to stand on a podium during a Grand Prix weekend last month as she targets more success as Silverstone today. Picture: Getty Images.

Messages of racist abuse were directed at three England footballers – Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka – following the Three Lions’ Euro 2020 final defeat to Italy last weekend. Moore revealed that as her profile has grown in recent years since joining the W Series, she has received more abusive homophobic messages but admits she does her best to ignore them.

She said: “With my profile rising a bit, the comments are starting to come in more than they have before.

“I am not the kind of person to let those comments affect me. I tend to laugh at them or ignore them. Twitter seems to be the worst place for it, I don’t even look at comments on there. I just post what I need to and leave it be.

“Unfortunately you are always going to have a minority of people who are going to leave those comments.”

HISTORY MAKER: Sarah Moore became the first openly gay LGBTQ+ driver to stand on a podium during a Grand Prix weekend last month as she targets more success as Silverstone today. Picture: Getty Images.

Three British drivers lead the W Series standings heading into today’s race at Silverstone. Moore is second in the rankings behind 2019 champion Jamie Chadwick as she prepares for the only race on British tarmac this year.

“I couldn’t have had a better start to the season,” she said.

“I have been set on a top-five finish this year but I have exceeded my own expectations so far. We have just got to work on keeping it consistent so I can stay in reach at the top.”

Moore has not let her rapid start to the year throw her ambitions off track. The Harrogate-born driver would still be pleased to secure a top-five finish this year and hopes to see some British success on the track today.

She continued: “It is still early days. We are technically a quarter of the way through the championship but there is still a long way to go. I am keeping my feet firmly on the ground and staying focused on finishing in the top five at the moment.”

Moore has raced at Silverstone on plenty of occasions throughout her career but the W Series car will be the fastest one she has been in at the world-famous circuit. She added: “It doesn’t get much better unless you are on the Formula 1 grid. For the Brits, it is definitely the biggest race of the year for us all.”