22 May 19
With just days to go until the battle for Berlin kicks off at Tempelhof Airport on May 25, we take a look at the lesser known stats and facts behind the race in the German capital.
The German capital measures approximately 23 miles from north to south and 28 miles from east to west, making it the largest city in Germany and, at over 3.5 million, it has the European Union’s second largest population, after London.
Considered by many as Germany`s greenest city due to its vast number of parks, woodland, canals and lakes, Berlin has a large system of waterways covering over 100 navigable miles and has more bridges than Venice.
Known for its architecture, the arts and sciences, Berlin is recognized as a world city of culture and creative industries. Germany’s capital is home to three world-class Opera Houses, the world-famous Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, a plethora of theatres and museums, Europe’s most visited zoo and remains Germany’s primary centre of science and research.
Berlin is home to three Unesco world heritage sites, Germany’s tallest structure, the Fernsehturm (television tower), and one of the country’s most famous landmarks, the Brandenburg Gate, which once represented German division but is now a symbol of peace and unity.
No city has staged as many E-Prix as Berlin, which will host its sixth Formula E race on May 25 and remains the only place that has played host to an E-Prix in every season since the start of the all-electric series in 2014.
Tempelhof Airport, which stopped operating in 2008, plays a very special role in the history of Berlin. The site is seen as a symbol of freedom after its role in the famous airlift of 1948/49 when allied forces wholly supplied people in the city by air for nearly a year after the Soviet Union entirely blockaded the western parts of Germany’s capital. Earlier this month, dignitaries from around the world gathered in Berlin to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the end of the airlift.
Alongside Formula E, Berlin has staged numerous major international sporting events. Most notably, it was the host city for the 1936 Summer Olympics and was also the venue for the 2006 FIFA World Cup final and the 2009 World Championships in Athletics.
The 10 turn 2.375 km track is sited on the giant apron of the terminal building, Europe’s largest monument. With it's high-grip track, the Tempelhof Circuit is a difficult track to master. Expect a little more wear and tear than usual.
Berlin will see plenty of local interest with German teams and drivers all vying for bragging rights in their home race. Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler has made the podium in each of the last four E-Prix in the German capital and dominated in Berlin last year, registering maximum points (47) courtesy of Daniel Abt’s race win, fastest lap and pole, coupled with Lucas di Grassi’s runner-up spot. Mercedes’ forerunner HWA Racelab will be keen to make its mark in their first Formula E race on home soil, as will title sponsor of the Berlin race, BMW i, who, alongside American partners Andretti, will be looking to secure a podium finish in Berlin for the first time.
Alongside the teams, four German drivers will be hoping to make an impression in their ‘home’ race on May 25. Daniel Abt will be looking to make it a hat-trick of personal podiums in Berlin, after coming second in the 2015/16 season, coupled with his memorable clean sweep last year. Andre Lotterer will be hoping to improve on last year’s ninth-place finish in his first Berlin E-Prix, while this time it will be the turn of Pascal Wehrlein and Maximilian Gunther to make their Berlin debuts in the all-electric series.
Last year’s layout at the Tempelhof Airport circuit was modified and lengthened from the previous season and it was Jean-Eric Vergne who set the fastest lap time of 1:09.438 seconds on the 2.375 km track in Practice 2 twelve months ago.