Sunday, June 23, 2024

Formula E fast-charging pit-stops delayed until 2024

It was confirmed during last weekend’s Berlin E-Prix double-header that fast-charging pit-stops wouldn’t be getting introduced during the 2022/23 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship as originally planned, with them set to be delayed until next season.

The idea behind fast-charging pit-stops is to make the racing more tactical, given that the mandatory stop would see drivers receive four kilowatt hours of energy within thirty seconds, through a mighty 600kW “booster”.

Some of the teams and drivers were sceptical of the thought of it being introduced mid-season given that it would likely have a direct impact on the Drivers’ Championship, something which is hotting up nicely after Mitch Evans and Nick Cassidy won the races at the Tempelhof Street Circuit.

Evans actually told The Checkered Flag towards the end of last year that “if it was me making the call”, the fast-charging pit-stops wouldn’t be introduced until Season Ten (2024), meaning the Kiwi will likely be pleased by the news.

“I would have expected them to wait [until Season Ten],” Evans revealed to The Checkered Flag at Jaguar TCS Racing‘s I-TYPE 6 launch last November.

“I guess they would have liked for it to come in earlier but it’s just the way that it’s just evolved. I mean, it’s exciting though, it’s really exciting to have pit stops again. That’s going to be great.

“But to introduce a halfway through a season is unusual to say, but as a team we want to try and be prepared because again, it’s just another massive variable that’s been thrown in there, especially throughout a season, which we’ve not really been able to practice much. If it was me making the call, I would have waited until Season Ten, just let us do this [season].”

Credit: Sam Bloxham courtesy of FIA Formula E

It was Formula E CEO Jamie Reigle who admitted that waiting until next season was the right choice, so that the new format can be done “in the right way”.

“I think we wait until next year and we do it in the right way,” said Reigle during a media session in Berlin, as reported by Motorsport-Total.com.

Formula E co-founder Alberto Longo added that it was best to continue working on the technology needed to make it work for the rest of the year, with “supply” issues meaning it can’t be introduced in the second half of this season.

“We would love to have it this season but I don’t think at the moment it’s totally viable to implement it,” Longo said.

“It will have a big impact on the sporting format and to do that only in the three or four races at the end the season, even though if we are capable of doing it, maybe it’s not the right decision.

“The technology is there. It’s working and at the moment many of the people are suffering with the supply chain, and that’s the main issue why we haven’t been able to put it in work this season.

“But if it doesn’t happen, then it will come in the first race of season ten, which is totally valid. We will make a little bit of a change in our sporting format, which is what we want to do year on year and keep on improving.”

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