Welcome, to my final blog post of 2018. It has been a pretty good year with me being able to attend more race weekends then ever before, visit events as accredited media that I had previously only ever dreamed of, oh and there was the day where I travelled to and from Switzerland all within 12 hours. In this blog post, I will reminisce and reflect on my key motorsport highlights from the year and give an honest review of my experiences and any corny life lessons I might have learnt along the way. If you are patient, you can also read about a new project I will be tackling in 2019. It is something that has been in the works since the summer and I am so happy to be sharing it with you all now as we approach the new year and welcome new beginnings. Anyway, enough waffling – I have made myself a huge mug of tea and am ready to confess all from my year in motorsport.
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.
As soon as the FIA ABB Formula E Championship was given the green light, the series knew it would have to be at the forefront of technology both in general and in their race cars. It was ‘driving the future’ as the series tagline stated and although the current race cars look fun, fast and futuristic, they are still very much a generic single-seater with a battery added in at a later date. However a new generation of Formula E car is on its way and it is here to change the game.
The slick, innovative and modern design of the second generation Formula E car, known as the ‘Gen2’, was finally revealed to the world at the end of January this year through a series of digital images and a video. The launch was a huge success with many praising the slick and Batmobile-esque design, however it was confirmed the official launch of the car would be held on Tuesday 6th March at the Geneva International Motor Show.
Despite having to wait on more key statistical information about the new Gen2 car, there is plenty that can be learnt from these digital images and previous news stories about the car that will come into effect from next season.
Whether you are a fan of the all-electric Formula E Championship or not, there can be no denying that the 2017 Mexico ePrix was one of the craziest races of the past year, or even this side of the decade. The race had almost everything – as much as I despise the cliché: mechanical failure snatching any chances of a win from the pole sitter, spectacular spins and saves, team mates taking one another out just laps before the chequered flag and even an appearance from Paris Hilton.
However the strategy and energy-management from Lucas di Grassi and his then team, Abt Schaeffler Audi Sport, meant the Brazilian optimised the totally bonkers race and finished with victory – having started near the back of the grid and being forced to pit for a rear wing change just a few laps in.
As we prepare for Formula E’s third consecutive return to the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez, I take a look back at the 2016/17 Mexico ePrix and why it could be Formula E’s best ever race.
The FIA Formula E Championship is known for its fast-paced, action-packed race days. We are witness to two practice sessions, qualifying and a race all within a Saturday, in addition to the handful of fan engagement sessions that are scattered through out the day for visitors of the all-electric racing series.
These crazy schedules have always been a challenge for the drivers and teams in the sport. It tests the stamina of the racing drivers and the displays the skill the mechanics and engineers have in order to get a car up and running in such a short space of time, as well as fixing any damaged sustained during a session.
As we approach the sixth round of the FIA Formula E Championship in Paris this weekend, it’s important to understand the layout of the 1.920m track and the twist and turns that brought us so much action here last year. Join me as I walk the race track that will be host to the championship here in the heart of Paris this weekend.
It’s not every day you get to interview a current FIA World Champion on your blog, so this post is pretty special. Mattias Ekström is the 2016 FIA World Rallycross Champion, hammering his Audi S1 EKS RX Quattro around incredible tracks worldwide to win the drivers’ championship title at the penultimate race at Estering, Germany, earlier this year.
Taking part in the ‘My Motorsport Year‘ advent calendar I am hosting during December on katyfairman.wordpress.com, Ekström discusses his highs and lows from the year, as well as reviewing his year that lead him to become a world champion in yet another series.