With eight rounds of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship already down and out, we find ourselves back in familiar surroundings as Formula E returns to Berlin for the fourth year running for the 2018 BMW i Berlin E-Prix.
With both the public debut of the Formula E Gen2 car driven by Nico Rosberg and the debut of the Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy driven by Formula E Founder and CEO Alejandro Agag, Berlin is the most action-packed E-Prix of the season so far. With only four rounds left of the championship, it's getting hot at the top as leader Jean-Eric Vergne (Techeetah) makes a break for the championship title with 147 points to his name. Applying pressure behind him, is DS Virgin Racing's Sam Bird in second and Mahindra Racing's Felix Rosenqvist in third.
With Berlin as the home race for all four of our German drivers - Techeetah's Andre Lotterer, Venturi Formula E's Maro Engel, Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler's Daniel Abt and Mahindra Racing's Nick Heidfeld - let battle commence as we count down to the 2018 BMW i Berlin E-Prix.
Measuring 2.375km, all 20 drivers will complete 45 laps around the circuit at Berlin's Templehoff Airport. With a total of ten turns, the circuit is tough on tyres but with plenty of opportunities for overtaking, expect another epic battle to play out in the German capital.
As we count down to Round 9 of the championship in Berlin, here’s your definitive guide to all the action on and off track on race day – Saturday, May 19.
Can't make it to the race? No problem - check out our handy broadcast guide to find out how to watch where you are.
SATURDAY, May 19 (all times are local to Berlin - UTC+2)
08:30 - Allianz E-Village opens
For the early risers, the gates to the Allianz E-Village - Formula E's festival of entertainment, technology and innovation - open at 08:30. 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.
09:00 - Free Practice 1, Track
For those keen on getting in on ALL the racing action, the first free practice session of the day starts at 09:00. 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 200kW of the car's power.
10:20 – Pitwalk (ticket holders), Pitlane
For all Pitwalk ticket holders, here’s your chance to see behind the scenes in team garages in the pitlane.
10:30 – Birddogs live on stage, Podium
Head over to the Podium to see Birddogs perform live on stage.
11:30 - Free Practice 2, Track
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 200kWs.
12:10 - FM Dance Crew, Podium
Head over to the Podium to see FM Dance Crew perform live on stage.
12:30 - Birddogs live on stage, Podium
Head over to the Podium for another chance to see Birddogs perform live on stage.
14:00 - Qualifying, Track
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).
14:45 - Super Pole, Track
During the Super Pole shoot-out, the top five 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 fourth fastest driver heads out. This is repeated until all five drivers have completed a lap. The fastest driver out of the five will be awarded the Julius Baer Pole Position and an additional three points. It's all worth fighting for.
15:00 - Birddogs live on stage, Podium
Another chance to catch Birddogs live on stage on the Podium.
15:15- Audi e-tron Vision Gran Turismo Concept, Track
We’re used to seeing cars recreated in games but Audi’s e-tron Vision Gran Turismo Concept is the real-life creation of the car from the Gran Turismo video game. See it live, in all its battery-powered glory, as it laps the track.
15:40 - FM Dance Crew live performance, Podium
Another chance to see FM Dance Crew perform live on stage on the Podium.
15:45 - E-Race final, Gaming Arena, Allianz E-Village
Not all the racing in Formula E takes place on the track. At every round of the championship is the E-Race - a virtual race taking place in the Allianz E-Village, where drivers battle against the fans on simulators, that replicate all the on-track action. With the three fastest fans going head-to-head against the three fastest drivers, the E-Race is the place to take on pros. Think you can do it?
15:50 - Moritz & Das Große Alte Problem live performance, Allianz E-Village
Stick around after the E-Race to see Moritz & Das Große Alte perform live on the Podium.
16:00 - Debut drive of Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy driven by Alejandro Agag, Track
After Jaguar announced the race-spec version of the I-Pace - the eTrophy - will be running as a support series a Formula E races next season, here is your chance to see it run out in the open, on track for the first time, driven by Formula E Founder and CEO Alejandro Agag.
16:10 - Debut drive of the Formula E Gen2 car driven by Nico Rosberg, Track
After the covers came off the next generation Formula E car at the Geneva motor show earlier this year, watch Nico Rosberg take the car for its first public drive around the Templehoff circuit, marking the German drivers return to the track.
16:20 - Roborace: Human Machine Time Attack Challenge, Track
Stick around trackside to see the driverless Roborace car take on a human driver in a time attack challenge. Who will win - man or machine?
16:25 - Drivers' Autograph Session, Allianz E-Village
Stick around after the E-Race to meet with the drivers at the Autograph session. Signing everything from caps, t-shirts and memorabilia of all shapes and sizes.
17:00 - Driver Parade, Track
Here's your chance to get a good look at all 20 drivers before the race as they complete a parade lap around the track. The next time you see them, they'll be going flat out in the race.
18:00 – Race – 2018 BMW i Berlin E-Prix (45 laps)
No more training, no more practice - this is it - when the lights go green, it's just 45 laps of pure electric racing but there can only be one winner.
19:05 - Podium Ceremony, Podium
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 and watch them spray the Mumm champagne in the Allianz E-Village.
20:00 - Allianz E-Village and 2018 BMW i Berlin E-Prix closes
That's it for the race in Berlin but it doesn't end there as Formula E's European campaign continues with the Julius Baer Zurich E-Prix on June 10.
Published on 16th May 2018