Mahindra Racing will get its 2018/19 ABB FIA Formula E Championship campaign underway next weekend as Jérôme D'Ambrosio and Felix Rosenqvist take to the track for the SAUDIA Ad Diriyah E-Prix, which takes place on Saturday 15 December in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
The opening race is a brand new venue for Formula E and the championship's first visit to the Middle East. The E-Prix will take place on a newly designed 21-turn, 2.495km street circuit snaking around the UNESCO heritage site on the outskirts of Riyadh. Ad Diriyah was the Kingdom's first capital in 1744 and will now be the location for the historic moment of all-electric street racing taking place in Saudi Arabia for the first time and the race debut of the Gen2 Formula E cars. New for Season 5, the next generation cars will last the duration of the race – 45 minutes + 1 lap – rather than needing to swap cars at the midway point.
Lining up in the two M5Electro's for their inaugural race run will be Jérôme D'Ambrosio and Felix Rosenqvist. With the Belgian and Swede in Mahindra Racing colours, the team begins the season fielding two drivers who have five race wins between them and a combined experience of seven Formula E seasons.
"We have a good car with the potential to fight at the front and that should be the goal – nothing less. We have to start the season in the best possible way and take every opportunity that comes our way. I believe we’re approaching Riyadh in a good position. The SAUDIA Ad Diriyah track looks quite interesting and I’m surprised with the layout. The backflow section will be quite interesting to drive and watch how it will play out for the race. Having said that, it’s the same for everyone and I think qualifying will be very important and I’m really looking forward to racing there."
"You never really know when a new season starts where you will end up in qualifying but the team is extremely positive from the feedback at the pre-season test in Valencia. Certainly, if the pace is there, then we want to be in front as always. The SAUDIA Ad Diryah track looks really cool. It has two completely different parts to it; one half is super twisty, and the other half is straight with some basic corners. I think the first section with all the turns is going to be really tricky and it looks like one of the most challenging tracks we’ve seen in Formula E, especially with the increased speed of the new Generation 2 cars. Obviously, it’s a bit different heading into the first race knowing I'm not going to race for the whole season but I'm glad to be back and I’m going to do my best to achieve the best result for the team."
DILBAGH GILL, CEO and Team Principal
"We're looking forward to kickstarting our fifth consecutive season in the ABB FIA Formula E championship. It's been five months since the Season 4 finale, so there’s a lot of excitement within the Mahindra Racing family as we get ready to watch the new M5Electro make its race debut at the SAUDIA Ad Diriyah E-Prix. The opening race is the first time the new Gen2 Formula E cars will go head-to-head in the new race format. We're feeling positive and motivated and have high expectations for the race ahead with two experienced Formula E race winning drivers. The team is all working towards one common goal and that’s to finish in the best possible position at every race."
The race start time for the SAUDIA Ad Diriyah E-Prix is 14:30 AST.
Mahindra Racing is one of ten founding teams – and the only Indian team – to compete in the ABB FIA Formula E Championship, the world's first all-electric racing series. Mahindra Racing has impressive credentials; after scoring it’s breakthrough win at the Berlin E-Prix in 2017, the squad now has three race victories to it's name in addition to 15 podiums, six pole positions and 516 points from 45 starts. After four seasons with the first generation race car, all eyes now turn to season five. Mahindra Racing has high ambitions with the Gen2 M5Electro, a technical innovation that will see the car last the duration of a race as Formula E continues to push the limits of technology and electrification.
ABB FIA FORMULA E CHAMPIONSHIP
The ABB FIA Formula E Championship is the world's first fully-electric single-seater racing series, competing on the streets against the backdrop of some of the most iconic cities - including Hong Kong, Marrakesh, Paris, Berlin, New York and Montreal. The championship represents a vision for the future of the motor industry, serving as a platform to showcase the latest innovations in electric vehicle technology and alternative energy solutions. Future seasons will see the regulations open up further allowing manufacturers to focus on the development of motor and battery components, which in turn will filter down to everyday contemporary electric road vehicles.
The Mahindra Group is a USD 20.7 billion federation of companies that enables people to rise through innovative mobility solutions, driving rural prosperity, enhancing urban living, nurturing new businesses and fostering communities. It has a leadership position in utility vehicles, information technology, financial services and vacation ownership in India and is the world's largest tractor company, by volume. It also enjoys a strong presence in agribusiness, components, commercial vehicles, speedboats, consulting services, energy, industrial equipment, logistics, real estate, steel, aerospace, defence and two wheelers. Headquartered in India, Mahindra employs over 240,000 people across 100 countries. Learn more about Mahindra at www.mahindra.com
Supporting Mahindra Racing is Tech Mahindra which was recently ranked in 15th on the Forbes' Digital 100 list-the highest-ranked non-US company to feature. After receiving previous accolades for its sustainability vision, Tech Mahindra was honoured for the fourth consecutive year as a leader in the 2018 Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI).
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