Give a driver a boost at today’s beachfront Formula E race

One of the most involving aspects of the fast growing Formula E racing series in FanBoost, where you can vote to give any driver an extra boost of power they can use during the race.

Formula E explains the rules and concept:

The three drivers with the most FANBOOST votes are awarded a significant burst of power, which they can deploy in a 5 second window during the second half of the race. You can vote to FANBOOST your favourite driver in the 6 days prior to, and leading up to 6 minutes into, each race.

There are 20 drivers to vote for and currently leading in the fan boost (10:26AM EST) are:

  • Daniel Abt of Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler
  • Sebastien Buemi of  Renault e.dams
  • Felix Rosenqvist of the Mahindra Racing from India

You can vote here on the Formula E website

You can also vote on twitter using On Twitter using hashtags #FANBOOST + #DriverName

Race time is 16:03 (GMT-3) and the Formula E has a page to show you how where you can watch or listen in your country.

Today’s practice session results

In the today’s practice sessions Buemi and Rosenqvist both did well.  Watch the video of it below, livestreamed earlier today on YouTube

Buemi came out on top with a time of 1:14.536.

Close behind was reigning champ Lucas di Grassi  of Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler at 1:14.941.  (Di Grassi is currently number 5 in the FanBoost running)

And in third was India entry Mahindra Racing’s Felix Rosenqvist.

Mahindra’s Chief Engineer Vinit Patel wrote on the team’s blog:

Punta has always been a thermal strategy race and all the teams are aware of the challenges, and they need to make sure it doesn’t get too hot for the battery. Depending on the wind, there could also be a fresh layer of sand dusting the track before every session and we might see the later qualifying groups quicker than the earlier ones and that’s down to the luck of the draw.

All the major carmakers are into it

Formula E, now in its fourth season, is the electric version of Formula One racing. The race in Punta Del Este is the 6th race in this season’s 12 race series.

If you haven’t watched a race, you should check it out. Each race lasts about an hour and the cars race through roadways specific to each place.

Today for instance, the race takes place on Playa Brava Beach lining the Atlantic Ocean. Races so far this  season have been in Hong Kong, Marrakesh, Santiago and Mexico City, with Rome, Paris, Berlin, ZUrich and New York coming after this weekend’s race.

Many of the major car manufacturers are already in the game: Audi, BMW, Renault, and Citroën…with Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, and Nissan committed to joining. Title partner is digital pioneering technology leader ABB along with technical partner Michelin and TAGHeuer, Qualcomm, VISA, BMW i, DHL, Allianz, enel, Hugo Boss and Mumm’s Champagne

“Formula E is approaching the field of motorsport totally differently. The races are in big city centres and they do a lot with social media and are attracting a different audience,” says Tristan Summerscale, project manager for Formula E at Audi.

Formula E car

Drivers say it is a tough test

While the series is a great experimentation and proving grounds for EV technology, especially in terms of battery range, the races are exciting because the emphasis is so strongly on the driver’s ability.

Driver Mitch Davis of New Zealand, told NewsHubNZ

“I think drivers are already seeing Formula E as a realistic goal for where they want to end up,” said the Team Panasonic Jaguar Racing driver.

“If you’re talented driving karts or junior formula, and you don’t have that massive funding, it’s not going to be overly realistic for a driver, which is not the way it should be.”

And Nelson Piquet Jr. and Sebastien Buemi had this to say to the UK’s Sun newspaper:

The fact that practice, qualifying and the race are all rolled into one day adds immense pressure to drivers. If there is a problem in one of the sessions prior to the race, they have very little time to react, which has a knock-on effect throughout the day.

Jaguar’s Piquet Jr said: “It’s tough, when I go back to doing normal weekends, you have so much off time it’s crazy. Over here in Formula E you hardly have time to breathe.”

Buemi added “In a way it’s easier because you have no gears, it’s just a throttle and the brakes but you need a lot of skill to manage the car on these street tracks. What makes it difficult at the moment is the fact that the battery is very heavy and is at the back of the car.”

Punta Del Este race track
Track guide – 2018 CBMM Niobium Punta del Este E-Prix
Number of turns – 20
Track length – 2.785km

Who will win today’s race?

Here’s a summary of the last two races on the Playa Brava Beach track.

The 2.785km circuit hugs the coast before doubling back on itself. With 20 turns, “it’s the most unique track,” said winner Sebastien Buemi. “With a lot of quick, tight chicanes. It’s a very high-speed circuit, which I enjoy.” Located on the sun-drenched southeastern peninsula of Uruguay, Punta del Este has been a popular coastal location since the early 20th century. 

Having played host to Formula E in Season One and Two, Punta del Este saw TECHEETAH’s Jean-Eric Vergne on pole in his first ever Formula E race in 2014 while Renault e.dams’ Sebastien Buemi took the top step on the podium. Season Two saw former champion Nelson Piquet Jn. crash out in spectacular fashion while Buemi held onto his title as the race winner for the second consecutive year.

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