THE ROAD TO RIYADH
What does it take to get a Formula E team from Monaco to Saudi Arabia?
The world of Formula E moves fast – that’s a given. Season 5 concluded, pre-season testing passed us by and once more we’re preparing for a fresh campaign.
Gearing up for the 14-race 2019/20 championship, we head to Diriyah, Saudi Arabia for the first two E-Prix of the season and a wheel-to-wheel battle on one of Formula E’s most technical circuits. While the fight takes place on track, there is always plenty going on behind the scenes – and preparations for Season 6 began long ago at our headquarters in Monaco:
“We started our preparations for Season 6 before Season 5 had even finished,” explains Team Manager, Delphine Biscaye. “Everything takes time and we started to organise this season’s freight in late May / early June to prepare. After New York, the cars did not come back to Monaco until the end of August and from then you really start working.
“By the first week of September, we only had one week until the first official test in Valencia and during this month we worked on the car, our new powertrain and the freight for Season 6. September and October are definitely some of our most busy months and, after Valencia, we serviced the cars to make sure that they were in shape for Riyadh.”
With the cars readied for action back at base, the freight for the opening race was sent off during the first week of November – just 10 days after it arrived. The cargo then heads directly from one race to the next, meaning it will not return to the Venturi HQ until after the London E-Prix in July.
Having our freight on the road for the next nine months makes it vital that the team packs absolutely everything required for the season from the outset. And with limited space available, only the essentials for our Season 6 adventure can make the journey:
“One issue that we face is that we’re limited in the freight volume that we can carry – and also the weight,” continues Delphine. “We all have the same number of boxes that are allowed and we can’t take any more than that, so it has to fit in! Every year it is a huge challenge – but for Season 6 we are a lot more prepared. We’ve planned the loading of every piece of equipment. It’s like a Tetris game! After some refinements we’ve made, we should be good at packing this season!
“The flights and hotels are booked and the catering for the week is also organized in advance,” adds Delphine. “Some of us will be leaving from Paris and some from Monaco – but the planning is done and we know our meeting times and media times. It’s all coordinated!”
Packed, prepared and raring to go, we’re ready to hit the road to Riyadh and beyond. Let the Season 6 adventure begin…