Tag Archives: Lucas Di Grassi

Formula E: Why Audi don’t need Formula One

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Following on from yesterday’s post suggesting that after their success in the World Endurance Championship, Porsche may be considering a future in Formula One, Livery designer extraordinaire & MsportXtra partner Sean Bull went on to post livery concepts around a Future for Audi in F1 again partnering with Red Bull Racing.

Whilst I’m a huge fan of the livery concept. To me, Audi’s future in motorsport sits within Formula E. Earlier this month Audi became the first German Automotive manufacturer to officially commit to the championship, taking over the Abt team license.

As an automotive manufacturer, Audi has recognised the trend towards Electric Vehicles and are embracing it. In motorsports, with Formula One, Audi would be forced into a battle of the budget in order to compete and to be seen as a success. With Formula E, they can engage with a younger audience demographic within a cost controlled environment, in a sport supported by governments and industry. They have an opportunity to lead, not follow.

As Audi works driver Lucas Di Grassi tweeted last month, drivers might miss the 1000bhp LMP1 beasts of Le Mans but the future is Electric, and Audi have embraced their future.

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Formula E: FIA Formula E takes to the Ice!

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The FIA Formula E Championship is made up a truly unique group of people, with an endless drive to amaze and inspire. They are a creative marketeers dream, and a health & safety insurers nightmare!

When faced with the challenge of bringing to life the impact of climate change, what could have more impact than landing a car on an ice cap for a demonstration run? With support from  Julius Baer, Visa, DHL, Schaeffler, The Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation and Mumm Champagne House, Formula E bought this vision to life. The zero-emission racer was driven on the ice cap by adventurous race-winning Formula E driver and series ambassador, Lucas di Grassi.

The Brazilian, who will be seeking to go one better than his runner-up position in the season two championship when the series returns with the HKT Hong Kong ePrix on October 9, performed a series of jaw-dropping runs on the ice cap, inside the Arctic circle in the north of Greenland.

The seemingly impossible act was captured in a series of impactful short films that will draw the world’s attention to the escalating threat posed by the melting of the ice cap to global sea levels.

See the first of the films from the demonstration run here:

The stunning exhibition is a continuation of Formula E’s commitment to showcasing the ability of electric car technology to act as a key part of a more sustainable future, and play a vital role in tackling climate change.

Formula E CEO Alejandro Agag said: “I have four children and the future of the planet depends on how we can control the effect that human life is having on the environment and the climate. That is why I think climate change is very important to address, to control, to face, and everyone can do something. We do something for motorsport, other people can do something from whatever they do in their lives.”

Formula E vice-champion Lucas di Grassi said: “It was such a beautiful, peaceful place. To come here and see how huge the ice cap is and how the effect of global warming is changing it, melting it, gives me a completely different understanding of what we are doing with Formula E and the importance of driving electric cars.”

The event was only possible due to the co-operation and assistance of the Greenland government and its desire to raise awareness of a need for action on climate change. In order to learn more about the effects of the melting ice cap, Formula E has teamed up with Southampton University, and during the trip a tracking beacon was place upon an iceberg that had broken away from the ice sheet.

This will help to advance the research into the behaviour of these ice sheets in the open ocean, and the tracking device will allow climate scientists and fans alike to understand more about the graceful journey they undertake as they return back to the sea.

HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco said: “I fully support the bold and ambitious activity that Formula E has undertaken as a way of raising awareness of the effect climate change is having on the ice cap in Greenland. My Foundation recognises the role that electric vehicles can play in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and believes that Formula E can inspire a new generation of motorists and potential motorists to ‘drive electric’ and help in the fight against global warming through high-profile activations like this.”

A special 48-minute documentary looking at every aspect of how the event was put together has been commissioned and will be premiered at COP22, which takes place in Marrakesh, Morocco on November 13 this year. Formula E will also be in the North African country at the same time for the inaugural Marrakesh ePrix.