For the eighth round of the FIA Formula E Championship, the drivers and teams of the all-electric series head for Berlin. Held just two weeks after the Monaco ePrix, the German round marks a step-up in pace for all of the challengers, and is expected to rule certain contenders out of the title race.
Involved alongside the organisers since the advent of the championship, the people at Renault Sport Technologies have demonstrated their expertise through their unrelenting work on the Spark-Renault SRT01_E single-seaters. Since the inaugural round in Beijing, their qualities have centred on four areas that are close to the heart of the Renault brand: safety, performance, reliability and technical fairness.
Having proven that electric racing could become a reality, Renault Sport Technologies has gradually developed its role and has begun to turn its attention to preparing for the challenge of competing against rival manufacturers in the second season of the series. With its partner e.dams-Renault, the manufacturer is nonetheless aiming to win both titles – drivers’ and teams’ – in this, the series’ first year.
This weekend’s round provides the ideal opportunity to score important points for its title push. Germany is a country that is undergoing significant changes in the energy sector and in Berlin, it has a capital city that is the “green lung” of Europe. Shortly after reunification, the city implemented a development programme in 1994 that fully integrated environmental concerns.
With powerful symbols such as the Potsdamer Platz eco-district, an ultra-efficient public transport system and green spaces taking up almost half of its surface area, Berlin is continually looking to the future, just like Formula E and Renault.
For this, the series’ second European race, the drivers will be tackling a 2.469km circuit, with an anti-clockwise layout. Designed by Rodrigo Nunes, it features seventeen turns on the former Tempelhof Airport, which has now been converted into an immense park. The tight, twisty circuit will be challenging for the drivers, who will need to get to grips with it quickly with limited room for error over the course of the 33 laps.
As well as the main event, the ePrix will also see some 550 cars attempt to beat the world record for the largest ever parade of electric vehicles, whilst the Formula E School Series will make its bow in Europe. In the eVillage, Renault will be involved in a number of activities and attractions, including an electric track for young and old alike, an exhibition of the ZE range and a show car sporting e.dams-Renault livery. The team’s two drivers, Sébastien Buemi and Nicolas Prost, will take part in the autograph-signing session and fans can vote to give them their FanBoost. Many caps will be up for grabs as part of the FanBoost activity.
“The pressure is mounting on everyone involved. The Berlin round is going to be of vital importance ahead of the Moscow and London races,” commented Jean-Pascal Dauce, Director of Motorsport, Renault Sport Technologies. “For the first time, we are using a track set up outside of the city centre. The tarmac and the configuration of the airport make for an interesting challenge for the competitors, with a long series of turns and two straights where the FanBoost could make a difference. As usual, energy management will be essential and strategies are expected to play a very significant role in the race. In any event, we can’t wait to go racing in Germany, a country that loves cars and technological innovation, to demonstrate the potential offered by Formula E.”