Daring to be different.
Many times, we say that racing sims are blurring the line between virtual and real motorsport. This time however, it is a real motor racing series that takes inspiration from videogames. Seemingly looking at the likes of Mario Kart and other arcade titles, Formula E comes up with a brand new, probably slightly crazy, idea for season 2018/19, opening on the 15th of December at Ad Diriyah, for the Saudi E-Prix.
We are all familiar with the "Fan Boost", introduced by the all-electric series since its debut. At the beginning of the race, 3 drivers chosen by the viewers get an additional surplus of power, this time peaking @ 340 hp total!
The "Attack Mode" instead, is going to be ratified by the FIA for each E-Prix. How will it work? Every track will get a number of activation points, situated outside the ideal racing line on specific sections of the circuit. By following this alternative driving line, the driver will get the chance to charge a power up button delivering 34 extra hp to his/her car, totalling 306 hp at corner exit. He/she will have to make the most out of this boost while managing driving outside the ideal line.
While spectators at home will see the activation points and both the optimal and outside racing lines on screen thanks to augmented reality, the Halo will show what kind of bonus the driver is getting. Colours will be Blue for Attack Mode @ 306 hp, Purple for Fan Boost @ 340 hp.
Surely, this may sound like a very bold move from the FIA, but it is important to see how it will actually work on the racetrack. This new season is already showing much promise with the Gen2 Battery Pack (54 kWh) and the new aero design, both allowing the cars to no longer stop mid race for a vehicle swap. Furthermore, these new engines, delivering 272 hp this time around, together with the reworked compound for the Michelin tyres, will surely give spectacle on track for even faster speeds and better acceleration. This mix of real and arcade racing might sound silly, but could actually prove fun to watch. We'll see!
After all, they are the first to joke about it!
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