The F1 world is in mourning after one of its premier female drivers, Maria de Villota, was found dead in a Spanish hotel room. The 33-year-old, who hit the headlines last year when she lost her right eye following a crash in practice while working for Marussia, was discovered at around 7am local time in her room at a Seville hotel. Emergency services rushed to the scene and, despite attempts to resuscitate her, she was pronounced dead shortly after their arrival. De Villota was one of the most respected drivers in motorsport and one of only a few women to get behind the wheel of a modern F1 car. The Spaniard needed extensive surgery after last year’s smash in which her helmet became lodged into the back of the team’s transporter truck. However, she bounced back and recently penned an autobiography about her experiences called Life is a Gift. It’s thought that De Villota was staying in Seville ahead of a signing session for the new book.