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Jarvis Discussing Formula E Options

Former Audi factory driver Oliver Jarvis is seriously looking at a future Formula E drive…

Photo: Rick Dole/IMSA

Former Audi LMP1 driver Oliver Jarvis is in the market for a drive in the ABB FIA Formula E Championship, with teams interested in his familiarity with electric motors and regenerative braking systems.

E-racing365 has learned that Jarvis, who currently competes with Mazda Team Joest in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, has been in contact with Formula E teams recently.

He has not competed in single-seaters for almost a decade, since he raced for the British A1 GP team finishing third in the 2007-08 season.

“There has been contact with a few teams recently and I view Formula E as very attractive especially with the second generation of car,” Jarvis told e-racing365.

“I am interested if a good opportunity presents itself because the real attraction of Formula E is simply to go out and compete with a super-strong grid of guys, some of who I have raced against and beaten in the past.”

Jarvis believes that his previous work with Audi and the complex regeneration systems used on the LMP1 hybrid cars in 2014-16 will stand him in good stead should he find an opening in Formula E.

“As a former factory driver who was integral to the development of some similar technical systems that are used in Formula E, I feel I would adapt to it quickly,” he explained.

“There are some crossovers with the energy management, like when the fuel-limit was brought in to WEC and you really had to drive to a set target.

“It is similar, so I think this is part of why you see ex-WEC guys, and especially ex-factory drivers doing so well in Formula E.”

Jarvis would join fellow former Audi LMP1 drivers Loic Duval, Lucas di Grassi and Andre Lotterer in having raced in Formula E, while Allan McNish, Tom Kristensen and Benoit Treluyer have all tested one.

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

6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Jt

    August 1, 2018 at 10:49 pm

    All these talented sports car drivers. Their talents are wasted in FE

    • krisg

      August 2, 2018 at 4:35 pm

      It’s quite the opposite, FE cars are difficult to drive and more rewarding according to many drivers. And because the championship format, tight street circuits, the wheel to wheel action higher than in any single-seat championship to date. With all motorsport racing series switching or considering to switch to EV power in upcoming years, those drivers with experience with EV powertrains will be in high demand.

      • Sam Smith

        August 3, 2018 at 3:47 am

        I think having spoken to many drivers the Gen 1, which was far from a popular design, was not satisfying to drive but the overall challenge was. Whereas Gen 2 will see more satisfaction as it is quicker and needs more development, particularly the active braking. So, I suppose a different type of satisfaction, etc

        • krisg

          August 4, 2018 at 4:38 pm

          I do believe that the complains about lack of speed came from the first iteration of the 1st Gen car that had only 150kw in race mode for season 1. This past season they were racing with 180kw that for a racing driver still can’t be enough but was better – the difference in speed on track is clear when we watch races from season 1 and the last 4th season and compare them. With the new 2 Gen car things will change for better as looks like we will have 200kw in race mode, 225 for power boost mode and 250kw for Fanboost.

  2. Chris

    August 3, 2018 at 4:39 am

    It’s going to be really tough to get in now. So many great drivers are interested and so few seats. It’s probably even tougher than F1 now just because of the number of possible candidates. As opposed to F1 which picks from a select pool of chosen ones.

    • krisg

      August 4, 2018 at 4:32 pm

      and let’s not forget that drivers from other categories will be in disadvantage because they lack experience with EV power, regenerative braking and etc, so for a team to consider an ‘outsider’, he’ll have to be really good…

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