“Hawaii of the Far East” to host Formula E

21.03.2019 / Warm-Up, Formula E

Pilots Lucas di Grassi und Daniel Abt will race in South China’s palm-lined vacation paradise of Sanya this weekend. With Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler among the top three in the drivers’ and teams’ classification, both racers are looking forward to the trophy hunt in the Middle Kingdom.

Five dramatic races, five decisions just before the finish line – and five different winners: The ongoing fifth Formula E season has surpassed all expectations so far. The upcoming race will be no different: This Saturday, March 23, the tropical tourist destination of Sanya – nicknamed the “Hawaii of the Far East” and located on the South Chinese island of Hainan – will host the sixth round of the current season. Lucas di Grassi from Team Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler is in the thick of the action: Following his victory in Mexico City and runner-up finish in the recent race in Hong Kong, the 2016 / 2017 Formula E Champion ranks third in the standings, separated from the top spot by just two points. His teammate, Daniel Abt, came in fourth in Hong Kong and is currently in seventh position of the intermediate classification.

Team effort: de Grassi and Abt to mix it at the top
“The fact that Daniel and I are contending for trophies and victories is the result of intensive team work,” says Lucas di Grassi. “It’s what sets our squad apart from others: As the conditions toughen and the pressure is high, we show our real strength.” In the teams’ classification, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler is currently in second position after five of the season’s 13 races.

Circuit by the sea: Suspense guaranteed
This weekend’s host, Sanya, is located on the Hainan Island. Despite its name, the tourist resort is part of the Chinese mainland. The all-electric racing series Formula E already took to China’s capital Beijing twice, in 2014 and 2015. However, its premiere in Sanya promises to become another Formula E highlight: Located close to Haitang Bay’s beautiful beaches, the 550,000 inhabitant city’s 2,236-kilometer circuit runs across a canal, while its three hairpin turns allow for a series of overtaking maneuvers. Besides being a major tourist spot, Sanya is one of the island’s traffic hubs: And with the rate of electric vehicles constantly on the rise, it’s setting out to become the city with the cleanest air in entire China.

Schaeffler in Formula E
Schaeffler is one of the co-founders and one of the most notable and successful players in Formula E. In the 2016/2017 season, Team Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler won the drivers’ title (Lucas di Grassi) and in the following season, it won the teams’ title (Lucas di Grassi/Daniel Abt). Schaeffler has been contributing its know-how to the development of the powertrain since 2015. In doing so, the company demonstrates its expertise in forward-thinking technologies and presents ideas for sustainable mobility for tomorrow in the innovative electric racing series.

New technology
Formula E is entering a new era. The most conspicuous innovation for this season is that every driver has only one race car. The second-generation cars mark the end of the mid-race car swaps previously required as the battery capacity is now sufficient for the entire race. The cars’ futuristic design without a rear wing and the Halo protection system above the cockpit are also new.