15 Jul 19
From the heady days of the 2017/18 Championship finale in New York City, where DS Techeetah’s Jean-Eric Vergne clinched his first Formula E championship title to now – the opening of the 2018 SAUDIA Ad Diriyah E-Prix, taking place on December 15. Welcome to the 2018/19 season opener of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship – the dawn of a new era of the closest, most intense racing series on the planet.
With new cars, new drivers, new city circuits and rules, the fifth season of Formula E is an entirely different beast. Here’s just a taster of what to expect.
Old meets new. Racing in the ancient surroundings of Ad Diriyah, all 22 Gen2 cars and drivers will take to the 2.495km track to battle for the first victory of the season.
With 21 twists and turns, the drivers will skirt the historic town walls before heading back towards the start/finish line in the heart of the district. Who will emerge victorious?
Here’s all you need to know and what not to miss at the inaugural 2018 SAUDIA Ad Diriyah E-Prix. All times are stated in local time. Plan your own race day at the track with the official Formula E App - click here to download it.
For those keen on getting in on every minute of racing action, the first free practice session of the day starts at 07:00. This is the first time the drivers will have the chance to drive the track under timed conditions, giving us an insight into how they'll perform during the race. Despite the timings, they don't count towards the race result - it's just a free practice session. Here, the drivers can make use of the full 250kW of the car's power.
Watch Formula E’s official support series, the Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy take to the track for the first time as all 11 cars and drivers attempt to clock the fastest time in Qualifying in a bid to clinch Pole Position ahead of the race.
Yes, you guessed it - this session is exactly the same format as before only this is the second time the drivers will drive the track under timed conditions. This session is another chance for them to test the set-up of the car and make sure it's perfect for the race. Again, despite the timer running, this session doesn't count towards the race and drivers can make use of all 250kWs. Tune in here.
The gates to the Allianz E-Village - Formula E’s fan festival at the heart of the E-Prix - open at 10:00. With activities for all ages, including the drivers' autograph session, food stalls, interactive displays and the chance to drive the track on our simulators in the Gaming Arena. Here, the three fastest fans will go through to the E-Race where they'll have the chance to race directly against the three fastest Formula E drivers. Think you can beat the pros? Now's your chance to prove it. Click here to learn more about the Allianz E-Village.
Qualifying determines the starting grid for the race, with the fastest driver lining-up in first place. The session lasts one hour and sees drivers divided into groups, decided by a lottery conducted in advance. Each driver has six minutes to set their best time, with the top-five drivers proceeding to the Super Pole shoot-out (see below). Tune in to Qualifying here.
During the Super Pole shoot-out, the top six drivers from Qualifying go out one-by-one, with the slowest driver of the five going out first. As soon as they cross the line to start their flying lap, the pitlane light turns green and the fifth fastest driver heads out. This is repeated until all five drivers have completed a lap. The fastest driver out of the six will be awarded the Julius Baer Pole Position and an additional three points. It's all worth fighting for.
For all EMOTION Club ticket holders, here's your chance to see behind the scenes in the team garages and paddock on the pit walk.
For all EMOTION Club ticket holders, here's another chance to see behind the scenes in the team garages and paddock on the pit walk.
That's it, the cars have crossed the line and the top three drivers will take to the podium but only one can take the title - who will it be? Join in the celebration in the Allianz E-Village.
See the world’s favourite DJ David Guetta and US smash act OneRepublic perform live for a night of world-class entertainment.
That's it for the season opener in Saudi Arabia but the Championship is only just getting started as the series moves to Marrakesh on January 12.