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Filippi: “The Biggest Pressure Will Come From Within”

Recent Formula E convert Luca Filippi is discounting external pressure as he enters his first full-time drive for six years….

Photo: NIO

Recent Formula E convert Luca Filippi is discounting external pressure as he enters his first full-time drive in six years.

The Italian driver was a surprise choice to replace Jaguar-bound Nelson Piquet Jr. in the NIO team earlier this month, joining Oliver Turvey in the team for Season Four.

Filippi is adamant that he doesn’t feel added pressure due to the fact that he’s replacing Piquet, who won the inaugural 2014/15 FIA Formula E Championship title under the team’s previous guise as China Racing.

“The NIO team has an amazing group of people with great experience in motorsport,” Filippi told e-racing365.

“There’s no pressure from anyone. The biggest pressure will come from within because I’m an achiever and the last thing I want is not to succeed.”

Filippi, a keen supporter of electric vehicles, welcomed Formula E to his native Italy, which will hold the first ever single-seater race with the Rome E-Prix in April.

“It is perfect timing,” he said. “I think Italy is really looking for this technology.

“We’re starting to increase the power and organization of electric charging stations, so it makes sense to have an E-Prix in Rome.

“It’s such a historic place and it’s important for a city like Rome to reduce pollution in the center. It’s fantastic.

“Like anything else, the important thing is to move forward in motorsport, so with automotive companies quickly going electric it means moving progress.”

The 32-year-old enjoyed his first public running in Formula E machinery during the official pre-season test at Valencia earlier this month and said it’s a fun, but difficult car to drive.

“The main thing is that when you drive you need to think a lot, and I mean a lot,” Filippi said.

“You have to save your energy, be on target and at the same time attack and defend from other guys.

“The strategy in the race is crucial. The balance between grip levels and power is good. Every time you get to a corner, you have to be very precise,”

The coming Formula E season will be Filippi’s first full season of racing since his GP2 campaign in 2011.

More recently he had partial programs in IndyCar and GT racing.

Piotr Magdziarz is a contributor to e-racing365. An Autosport Academy member, Magdziarz also serves as a media assistant for the FIA European Truck Racing Championship.

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