F1's Susie Wolff loses driving ban appeal

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Susie WolffImage source, Getty Images
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Former Williams F1 development driver Susie Wolff lost her appeal against a driving ban on Friday

Former Formula 1 driver Susie Wolff has failed in a bid to get a driving ban for speeding overturned.

The 34-year-old, who now works as an ambassador for Mercedes, told a judge at Oxford Crown Court that losing her licence was "hugely embarrassing" and would affect her charity work.

She was recorded doing 35mph in a 30mph zone in June 2015 in the village of East Hanney, Oxfordshire.

The driver worked for Williams Formula One between 2012 and 2015.

'Not a girl racer'

Mrs Wolff, who lives in Oxford, already had nine points on her licence for two previous speeding offences when she was banned for six months by magistrates in November.

The ban was suspended until Friday's appeal hearing.

Mrs Wolff told the court: "I'm not a girl racer, I save my speed for the race track."

She asked for the ban to be lifted because it would have a "massive impact" on her charity work encouraging girls to take part in motor sport.

She said: "It is a hugely embarrassing situation to find myself in, I'm a professional driver and to be caught speeding and to have my licence taken away for speeding, it would have an effect on my reputation."

Mrs Wolff added that she is a "role model" to the hundreds of girls her charity, Dare to be Different, is aiming to help and did not want to let them down.

She also said she would not be able to fully participate in the charity's events or do her job promoting Mercedes if she was not able to drive.

Image source, Getty Images
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Wolff became the first woman to take part in a grand prix weekend for more than 20 years

But Recorder Sarah Campbell dismissed her appeal and told her: "It may well be an embarrassment as far as her position is concerned, but it may be a salutary lesson to those aware of the facts."

Mrs Wolff was also fined £500 and ordered to pay £345 costs and a £15 victim surcharge.

Mrs Wolff, who is married to Mercedes F1 executive director Toto Wolff, joined Channel 4's F1 commentary team in 2016.

At the British Grand Prix in 2014, she became the first woman to be involved in a grand prix weekend for 22 years, finishing 15 out of 22 in the free practice session.