After the announcement last week that current McLaren Formula 1 driver, Stoffel Vandoorne, was to swap the world of F1 for the all-electric circus of Formula E, many motorsport fans were left in shock. However, the decision made to embrace electric has lead to him being part of one of the strongest team-mate pairings the sport has seen, with current DTM Champion Gary Paffett concluding the HWA Formula E Team line-up.
With his fresh commitment to Formula E, in addition to his existing racing contract with McLaren, Vandoorne only has two days of testing available to him in Valencia. A fact made even more unfortunate when his car suffered battery issues on the first day of testing, resulting in only a handful of laps being set all day.
“No, I don’t know what’s going on,” Vandoorne started when asked about his reliability woes on Tuesday evening to katyfairman.com. “It’s not been an easy day for us. I think it was always going to be a bit difficult for us. The whole team is new to this series, myself and Gary [Paffett] as well. We are all new. We knew that we would run through a few issues and I think it’s a shame not to be out there and be running but you have got to give us and HWA a little time. All the people working here are extremely competitive and extremely competent and I’m sure in the future, once we get up and running, everything will go well.”
Continue reading “Vandoorne talks about his swap from F1 to Formula E”
Managing your source of power in motorsport is vital. It can make or break a driver’s race weekend. Guaranteed, the actual act of running out of fuel during a race is something that has not happened in Formula 1 for many years, but in a sport like battery-centred Formula E, managing the power source until the end of the race is still a learning curve for some of the championship’s brightest talents.
With a new generation of Formula E just months away, pre-season testing for season five getting underway in October, the innovative second gen car will incorporate a battery that will last the entire race distance. For the first four seasons of the all-electric championship the cars had a capacity to last half of the race distance, resulting in a tense and often highly-strategic mid-race car swap. The new battery, developed by McLaren Applied Technology, will see the top power output increase to 250 Kw/h (335bhp) and an additional 50 Kw/h available to drivers during qualifying sessions.
Continue reading “Hero to Zero: the reality of battery management in Formula E”
Sam Bird has proved himself to be one of the fastest, highly competitive and most consistent drivers in the four season history of the Formula E Championship. Until Audi’s Lucas di Grassi won his first race of season four in Zurich, Bird had been the only driver to win a race in every single season of the all-electric championship. This consistency is what has lead Bird to be in with a mathematical chance of winning the drivers’ title at every single Formula E finale*: a pretty impressive statistic.
His seven Formula E wins places him joint-second with di Grassi in the ranking of most successful Formula E drivers, with 34% of his races in Formula E resulting in a win or podium finish for the British driver.
Continue reading “Why Sam Bird is Formula E’s finest talent”
The reaction of people when I tell them that I am a motorsport journalist is usually met with total surprise. Maybe it is my age, or the fact that I don’t “look” like I would be interested in motorsport, but usually it’s the fact that I am a woman. The responses are never negative though, normally a reference to Suzi Perry or Lee McKenzie and words along the lines of “wow, that is different.” I always find it funny though because, to me, my gender isn’t really relevant to how I do my job – it never has been and it never will be.
Continue reading “The reality of being a woman in motorsport”
As ‘Hyperboost’, a working-title, was confirmed to be the newest change to the FIA Formula E Championship for the 2018/19 season, many drivers don’t seem too keen on the new idea, with the prospect of it being too gimmicky a serious risk.
Hyperboost, a power mode that would see the drivers receive a ‘boost’ of energy from 200kw to 250kw, was confirmed to be coming into effect from next season at the FIA World Motorsport Council earlier this week.
Continue reading “‘Push to pass’ option preferred for Formula E Season Five says Evans”
A steering issue with Lucas di Grassi’s second Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler car limited his chances at taking the win from team mate Daniel Abt this weekend at the Berlin ePrix.
Having fought his way up the grid and into second place after starting from fifth, making a small and un-characteristic mistake in the SuperPole shoot out earlier in the day, he told katyfairman.com “I think with the second car I definitely had the chance but my second car had some kind of problem. We need to investigate that.”
Discussing the issue in further detail, the season three Formula E champion said that issues with the vibration within the car even lead to him “just wanting to finish the race.”
Continue reading “Steering issue hindered di Grassi’s Berlin race”
Despite being one of the most experienced racing drivers on the current Formula E grid, racing in series such as the World Endurance Championship and previously winning the Super Formula Championship, Andre Lotterer confessed that the jump into Formula E “took time [in order] to feel at home and confident with everything”.
Talking to katyfairman.com, Lotterer, who experiences his first home ePrix this weekend in Berlin, explained that he found himself having “so much to learn in a really short time.”
“I am enjoying it a lot now, but it was difficult to enjoy it,” the Techeetah driver stated. “But as soon as we had some better results, [I am] feeling more confident with everything.
Continue reading “Lotterer found it “difficult to enjoy” the start of his Formula E career”