D Formula E is planning the restart. But because hardly any metropolis in the world is ready to let the electric circus run on public roads, Berlin had to step into the breach. At the former Tempelhof Airport, the teams can work shielded from the outside world. The risk of corona infections should be minimized through a special hygiene concept.
Due to the lack of alternatives, the series bosses have scheduled six races in Berlin. There will be double events on August 5th and 6th, August 8th and 9th, and August 12th and 13th. So that it doesn't get too boring, different route variants are to be used.
At Audi, a personnel question had to be clarified in six parts before the end of the season. The team from Ingolstadt had only thrown Daniel Abt from the driver squad a few weeks ago after the Kempten-based man had allowed himself a failed joke in an online race.
Preparation at Lausitzring
Abt was represented by a sim racing professional at an official run of virtual Formula E. Because he did not clear up the action planned as a YouTube gag early on, other pilots and many fans accused him of deliberate deception. Audi was then forced to throw the driver out of the squad.
Now the Ingolstadt-based company has officially decided on a replacement. As expected, René Rast will drive the second works car alongside Lucas di Grassi in the last six races. The 2017 and 2019 DTM champion was already at the Formula E race in Berlin in the 2016 seasonthere - at that time still for the Aguri team. Incidentally, the race was not held in Tempelhof at the time, but on a street circuit in the Mitte district.
During his first outings in the Audi Formula E racing car, Rast took part in test drives at the beginning of July together with teammate Lucas di Grassi Lausitzring prepared. 'I've been following Formula E very closely for a long time and am now looking forward to this new challenge,' said Rast before the restart of the series.
Six races to learn
The pilot had to do a lot of homework for the big season finale: ' The demands on the drivers in Formula E are great: In addition to pure speed, efficiency, battery management and perfect performance are also important Strategy - and all of that on narrow street circuits, which are usually quite turbulent. With the test drives at the beginning of July and my experience in the simulator, I will come to Berlin well prepared. And with six races in nine days I have ample opportunity to learn quickly, 'joked the 33-year-old.
If Rast did well at his Berlin appearances, the works driver could also do so in the coming season Find a permanent place in the Formula E team. After Audi's exit from the DTM, many drivers from the squad are still looking for new jobs.
Head of Audi Motorsport Dieter Gass sees his protégé as the ideal cast: 'As two-time DTM champion and long-time Audi driver, René was of course shortlisted from the start. He has often shown in the past how fast he can be in a new series even without a long period of getting used to it. It's nice that there are no overlaps in the DTM and Formula E, so René can compete for us in both series. With six final races in Berlin, everything is still possible for our team with a view to the championship. '