ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport is set for Hong Kong

490 laps at Donington alone and a total of 3,959 kilometres on various race tracks in Europe: Team ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport has successfully completed its preparations for the third Formula E season. Now the countdown to the season opener in Hong Kong, where the first race will be held, is starting for Lucas di Grassi and Daniel Abt.

The racing cars and all the equipment will be loaded next week and flown to Hong Kong. There the season of the racing series for fully electric vehicles in which the squad from Germany is pitted against nine other international teams will open – kicking off an international tour that will take them once around the world. Last year the team and its spearhead campaigner Lucas di Grassi came in second place of the teams’ and drivers’ standings.

At the end of the tests all ten Formula E teams used the track at Donington for three days this week. The circuit which is a two hours’ drive north of London is the series’ base station and traditional hub before each new season. “We’re very happy with the tests,” says team principal Hans-Jürgen Abt. “Our cars were running without any issues every day, our drivers gave us valuable feedback and we managed to tick off every item on our extensive schedule.”

Daniel Abt and Lucas di Grassi completed 269 laps in total on the 4.003-kilometre circuit from Monday to Wednesday. “We didn’t look at lap times here at Donington, but concentrated on intensively familiarising ourselves with the innovations on the car including the software,” says Abt. Together with its exclusive technology partner Schaeffler the team has developed an evolution of the powertrain that is fitted at the rear of the ABT Schaeffler FE02.

“We’re well set for the first race in Hong Kong,” says Lucas di Grassi. “During the entire testing stage the team worked with concentration and on a top-class level. The track at Donington is not comparable with the season’s city street circuits, so the times aren’t very conclusive and were not the main thing we focused on. Still, even at this point, it’s obvious that the fans can look forward to a thrilling season because all teams and drivers have moved together even closer than they were before.”

His teammate Daniel Abt will be travelling to Asia in a few weeks’ time with a positive feeling as well. “The most important thing was that our cars were absolutely reliable – just as they’d been throughout the entire previous season. Anytime we’d try a fast lap in between, we were in contention. Obviously, that doesn’t mean a lot on this track, but it’s still a reassuring feeling. I’m happy about the new season starting again soon – particularly with a highlight such as Hong Kong.”

The pre-season preparation of the team continues – albeit not on the race track. While the drivers are familiarising themselves with the near-two-kilometre track on the simulator, the team continues to intensively prepare as well. The engineers and mechanics will only see the four racing cars again in the pit lane in Hong Kong a few days before the first race.

When Formula E kicks off its third season on Sunday, 9 October the cars of the only German team will feature a prominent new logo. Audi intensifies its existing partnership with the squad by financial and technical support and, on the road toward a fully-fledged factory commitment, for the 2017/2018 season is joining the development step by step in close cooperation with Schaeffler.

Following the opening round in Hong Kong Formula E will embark on a tour around the globe, with subsequent visits to Marrakesh, Buenos Aires, Mexico City, Monaco, Paris, Brussels, Montreal and the two final races in New York. The team’s home round in Berlin will take place on 10 June 2017.

FIA Formula E online and on social media

Websites: abt-sportsline.de, danielabt.de, lucasdigrassi.com.br
Twitter: @FIAformulaE, @abt_formula_e, @Daniel_Abt, @LucasdiGrassi
Facebook: fiaformulae, abtmotorsport, abtdaniel, lucasdigrassiofficial
Instagram: fiaformulae, abt_fe, abt_sportsline, daniel_abt, lucasdigrassi
YouTube: FIAFormulaE, ABTSportslineTV, AbtDaniel