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Massa Needs to “Understand” Formula E Racecraft

Felipe Massa says he will have to learn the intricacies of Formula E street racing quickly…

Photo: Venturi

ABB FIA Formula E Championship debutant Felipe Massa says that he needs to understand the limits of racing in the often rough-and-tumble world of the all-electric series.

The Brazilian has not driven competitively since the end of 2017 and says that he is aware of the amount of contact that occurs in the series’ races.

He joins Venturi in the upcoming season, partnering Edoardo Mortara at the Monaco-based operation.

“They touch each other much more than in Formula 1, the drivers are doing this, so this is something I need to understand,” he told e-racing365.

“I need to understand how to behave with the limits.

“I was never a driver that behaved so bad you know in my career and I don’t think this will change, but you need to understand how you race in Formula E, you need to understand how you use the car.”

He also acknowledged the fact that drivers continuing in Formula E from the outgoing Gen 1 era will also have to adapt to the radically different new car and race format.

“For most of the drivers is a big change because now they are doing the whole race, no pitstop, no changing cars, with a different car, so with a different strategies in the middle, so at the end it will be a change for them,” Massa said.

“I think it is good to start in the different season with the big change in the rules, it is new for me, but experience in racing is always good in the end.”

Wolff: No Full Picture of Hierarchy Until Riyadh

Venturi team principal Susie Wolff believes that any perceived order of who has adapted best to the new rules and cars will not be clear until after the season opener in Riyadh.

While Dragon, Mahindra Racing, NIO, Nissan e.dams, Panasonic Jaguar Racing and BMW i Andretti Motorsport have all tested together at some stage at Calafat, Venturi has largely tested in isolation at Ales.

“I think that one of the obviously disadvantages of testing alone is that we don’t know where we are,” Wolff told e-racing365.

“But one of the advantages is that we are actually testing not far from our headquarters so that allows the logistics and much more efficiency to come in to our testing program.

“I am not even sure that you are going to get a full picture in Valencia because Valencia it is not a street circuit, it is a normal circuit, which means it is not going to provide a real true indication of where people are.”

She indicated that Audi would be a likely favorite as it looks to consolidate its all-round powertrain advantage that it enjoyed during the latter half of last season.

The German manufacturer has also tested privately, utilizing most of its running at Mallorca and its own proving ground in Neuburg.

“For me, going to New York and just observing in my first weekend in my new role, Audi were very impressive,” said Wolff.

“With the resource they have and the know-how they have from other championships too, I can only imagine that they are going to be one of the benchmarks for all of us.”

Sam Smith is e-racing365's Formula E Editor. A 20-year veteran in motorsports media, including press officer roles in both the FIA Sportscar Championship and at Lola Group, Smith is a well-known face in the Formula E paddock, where he served as series editor for Motorsport.com from 2014-17. Contact Sam

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