25 Aug 16

Extra regen = faster races

The new regen regulations will lead to improved performance in race trim in season three of the FIA Formula E Championship.

Season two champion Sebastien Buemi reckons that the new regulations should lead to an increased long run pace due to the extra energy available. He said: “The regen will help us do more laps and achieve a longer race distance which is good news for Formula E. Over one lap the cars will be faster but that will be mainly due to the chassis development.”

Mark Preston, team principal of Techeetah, agreed with Buemi’s assertion but believed that the high temperature of some cities may limit the benefit. He said: “It’s fairly mathematical. If we go from 100kW to 150kW, as long as the temperature is fairly low we should be okay, but at a circuit like Buenos Aires where the air temperature is as high as 35 degrees we may not be able to use all of the regen throughout the race as it puts more heat into the battery. It’s a bit like how your phone gets hotter when you charge it. When you put in energy and then take it out, you generate heat.

“Racing is a sprint; you want to get to the finish line in the fastest way that you can. You want to generate as much energy as you can in order to use it, so there is still an optimum of lifting and coasting that we can calculate. There’s always a trade off.”

Robin Frijns of Andretti explained that the team’s programme meant that they would be focusing on long runs later in the week and that the effect of the rule change was yet to be seen. He said: “We haven’t used a lot of regen yet and we haven’t been practicing lifting and coasting too much, but the more regen that you have the more you have to coast.”