Formula E Set to Hit the Big Apple!
New York City is about to get an up-close look at what many open wheel, Formula racing enthusiasts are calling the future of racing–at least that class of racing. As GimmeInfo reported in a previous post, battery-powered race cars have been working their way onto the big-time Motorsports scene over the past few years, comprising an entire class of racing–Formula E, the electric car segment of the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA)–that has captured the imagination of a growing segment of racing enthusiasts.
With sleek, quiet racing machines capable of speeds up to the 140-150 miles-per-hour range, the streets of Manhattan will come alive with the excitement of a major auto racing event. Alejandro Agag, CEO of Formula E, framed the magnitude of this milestone occasion in a press conference this way:
“To race in New York City is a historic moment – not only for Formula E, but for motorsport in general – and again highlights the philosophy of Formula E to bring fully-electric racing to the world’s greatest cities. When we originally started the project we could only dream of bringing Formula E to a place like New York, with arguably the most recognisable skyline of any city in the world.”
With Lower Manhattan and the iconic Statue of Liberty serving as a backdrop, the Formula E cars will navigate a 1.21 mile, 13-corner temporary race course running partially along the City’s waterfront and the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal. Current estimates are that 20 drivers will take the green on Saturday, July 15 at 4:00 pm for the first of two “New York City e-Prix” features, with the second event scheduled for 1:00 pm the following day. Practice sessions are scheduled for 8:00 am and 10:30 am on Saturday and 7:00 am Sunday, with qualifying for the first feature set for Noon on Saturday. Qualifying for the second e-Prix event will he held Sunday at 9:00 am. Fox Sports 1 is rumored to be televising the racing.
This is only the second season for Formula E as a formal racing series, but it appears to have captured the interest of a steadily growing body of fans. While the July 15-16 event–the ninth on the 2016-2017 schedule–is a first for the “Big Apple,” it’s not the first time the series has competed in the U.S. Formula E’s first U.S. appearance took place at Long Beach, California, where e-Prix events were staged in 2015 and 2016. But for New York, a city not necessarily known for motorsports events, it’s a big deal.
If you’d like to learn more about Formula-E and how these fully-electric racing machines operate, take a look at GimmeInfo’s post from last October (access it here). Within that article, you’ll find a link to a detailed video describing the technical aspects of the cars and their energy-delivery mechanisms. And if you’d like to take a virtual lap around the New York City street course, check out this YouTube video…
Enjoy! If you’re able to attend the event next weekend, you’ll have a first-hand look at what may well become one of the most interesting segments of competitive motorsports in years to come.