Italian teenager Vicky Piria has become the first female driver to sign for a GP3 team after completing a deal to race for series newcomer Trident Racing.
Although several female racers have tested GP3 cars, Piria is set to be the first to compete in the championship. The 18-year-old steps up after racing in Formula Abarth last season.
"After ending the 2011 FAbarth season I had the chance to test a Formula 3 car as I saw that as a possible chance for my open-wheel career," said Piria.
"When Trident Racing explained me the details of their GP3 Series programme though, I immediately known that it was the right thing to do for me.
"I know that there will be many tough aspects to overcome, especially because there will be a lot of more experienced drivers among my opponents. That said, I feel no pressure. I know I can afford a learning year and I'm aware that my goal for 2012 will be to improve step-by-step every lap."
Piria is the first driver to sign for Trident, which has taken the Addax squad's GP3 entry this year.