Sad that the F1 season is coming to an end? No need to worry, as Formula E, the fastest growing and most competitive motorsport in the world is back for its sixth season and trust me, there`s reason to be excited. The all- electric, city street racing boasts an international calendar with 12 teams all battling it out to take the championship, and if last seasons anything to go by, we`re in for a treat!
For those of you not familiar with Formula E, I think it’s helpful to look at some of the features that set it apart from more traditional forms of motor racing. One of the main elements facilitating the trademark unpredictability of the sport is Attack Mode, in which drivers leave the racing line to gain a power boost. The amount of uses the teams get per race varies and is only released an hour before the E-Prix thus meaning that race strategy is created under immense time pressure. Whilst just generally adding an extra dimension to the race, its a way of examining the team`s ability to act under pressure despite not having any pit stops. The same cannot be said however, for Fanboost, a feature in which the top 5 most voted for drivers get an extra power boost at some point it the race. Whilst I think that an attempt to engage fans in the sport is credible (being guilty of having voted on the Fanboost myself) I think for me, its just a step too far. It seemingly takes away from the hard work and fairness that should go into the sport and turns it into a popularity contest, not to mention the fact that the boost can become pointless when the drivers voted for have crashed into a barrier 10 laps previously and are out of the race.
In saying this, we fans were spoilt rotten last weekend in a double header opening to the season in Saudi- Arabia in which those victorious were Envision Virgin`s Sam Bird and BMW`s Alex Sims, a record breaking start for the Brit who took his third pole position in row ahead of race 2 and put himself top of the drivers championship by the end of the weekend.
The same cannot be said, however, for defending champion Jean Eric- Vergne who left the Diriyah circuit with no points, proving how truly competitive the sport is becoming. This fact in heightened by the arrival of motorsport giants Mercedes and Porsche who both scored a podium in their debut Formula E race creating a real rivalry between the rookies and the old guard.
Ultimately, the sport is innovative, progressive and truly nail biting, a definite breath of fresh air from the monotony of F1. With all cars running the same battery and chassis, in facilitates dynamism and drama, a perfect way to end your week.
Last modified: 24th April 2020