Harry Tincknell has joined NIO Formula E as its official simulator driver and could undertake some development of its Season Five car later this year.
The British driver has tested several times for the Chinese team since last year and has long harbored ambitions to race in the ABB FIA Formula E Championship.
Tincknell, who currently has a dual sports car racing program with Ford in the FIA World Endurance Championship and Mazda in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, has been given the official title of DIL (Driver in the Loop) Simulation Development driver.
“I’m really delighted to extend my relationship with NIO driving the simulator this year,” he said.
“I immediately felt at home with the team during pre-season testing and the rookie test in Marrakech, so to be working closely to help develop the car while at the same time gaining more experience with the unique techniques required to be fast in Formula E is the perfect scenario for me.”
NIO’s Team Principal Gerry Hughes welcomed Tincknell to the team and believes that the DIL Sim Development Program will be an important one.
“Whilst we have worked with Harry for some time now, this has always been very much on an ad hoc basis, whereas this arrangement gives our working relationship real structure as we continue to develop as an organization,” said Hughes.
“I wish Harry all of the best in his new role here at NIO and certainly our race drivers will be eager to witness the fruits of his labour in terms of the role that he will undertake in the overall DIL Sim Development Program.”
NIO has Oliver Turvey and Luca Filippi as its contracted drivers this season, while Ma Qing Hua acts as its official reserve driver.
Turvey has scored all but one of the teams’ current 33-point haul, while Filippi has had tough start to his rookie Formula E campaign, scoring only a single point.
It’s not yet known if NIO will attend the next group manufacturer test for the Season Five Formula E car at the Calafat test track, where Tincknell got his first team test.
Tincknell, who is managed by Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler team principal Allan McNish, has also previously tested for Panasonic Jaguar Racing at Donington in August 2016 when the team was evaluating drivers.