ABB FIA Formula E Rules and Regulations: Season Four

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MARRAKECH, MOROCCO - JANUARY 13: In this handout provided by FIA Formula E - Sebastien Buemi (SUI), Renault eDams, Renault ZE 17, and the race in action during the Marrakech ePrix, Round 3 of the 2017/18 FIA Formula E Series at the Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan on January 13, 2018 in Marrakech, Morocco. (Photo by Sam Bloxham/LAT Images/FIA Formula E via Getty Images)

The fourth season of the ABB FIA Formula E (Formula E) is in full swing with the fourth round taking place on February 3, 2018 in Santiago, Chile for the Antofagasta Minerals Santiago E-Prix. Here is a brief explanation of the rules and regulations so new viewers of Formula E know what to expect ahead of the E-Prix.

ABB FIA Formula E Rules and Regulations: Season Four

Overview

All Formula E events are held solely on temporary street circuits which are approximately 1.2 to 2.1 miles in length. All sessions, including practice sessions, qualifying and race take place on one day. (Unless there are two races during a weekend, a short session takes place on Friday.)

The Car

A Formula E car is an all-electric single seat, rear-wheel drive, open-wheel vehicle. It can reach a top speed of 225km/h (140mph) and accelerate from 0-100km/h (0-62mph) in approximately three-seconds.  All Formula E cars are constructed by Spark Racing Technology. Each car contains a monocoque chassis developed by Dallara. The steering wheel controls is supplied by Hewland, and batteries developed by Williams Advanced Engineering. The battery can produce 28kw/h at 200kw(270hp).

The Car Development

The Formula E car is designed for teams to develop their own drivetrains. A drivetrain consists of an electric motor, inverter, cooling system and transmission. Teams must get all parts homologated by the FIA in the off-season.

Teams focus on the optimization of the drivetrain, but they cannot upgrade parts.  The chassis, body structure, tires and batteries are all to specification. Teams cannot develop any of these. Teams can adjust setups to the chassis and wing angles for the races. The overall specification of the car is not based on aerodynamics and downforce. Therefore, cars can follow each other closely for a lengthy amount of time.

The Championships

Formula E consists of two championships, drivers’ and constructors’ championships. The drivers’ championship is determined by points accumulated by a single driver over the course of the season. The constructors’ championship is determined by total accumulated points for a team from both of their drivers at the end of the season.

Three points are awarded for taking pole position, and one point for the driver with the fastest lap. That point can only be awarded to a driver that places in the top ten positions. The lap times of positions eleven through twenty are not eligible for this point.

Formula E uses a standard system used in other sanctioned FIA series. Points are awarded to drivers placing in positions one through ten.
1st: 25 points     6th: 8 points
2nd: 18 points    7th: 6 points
3rd: 15 points     8th: 4 points
4th: 12 points     9th: 2 points
5th: 10 points     10th: 1 point

Teams and drivers competing in the 2017-18 season: https://lastwordonmotorsport.com/2018/01/15/formula-e-quietly-roars-into-2018/

The Shakedown

The day before the event, Formula E hosts a shakedown session. (Dependent on availability of the circuit) Power output is limited to only 110kw(148hp), allowing teams to adapt a setup and acclimatize to the circuit. It also allows the FIA to inspect the track layout looking for all safety hazards.

The Practice

Each E-Prix has two practice sessions, one forty-five minute session, followed by a thirty minute session. Power output is set to full power at 200kw(268hp). Teams can further acclimatize to the circuit and refine their setups for qualifying and race. Some locations host two events during the weekend. In this case, there will only be one forty-five minute practice session before qualifying on the second day.

The Qualifying

The qualifying session lasts only one hour. Drivers are split into four groups of five that are determined by lottery in the driver briefing. One group is sent out and each driver has six minutes to set their fastest lap. Then the next group goes out and repeats the process until every driver sets a lap time.

The top five drivers with the fastest lap advance to the Super-Pole shootout. Where each driver will have one lap to put their car on pole. In Super-Pole, drivers go out one by one, with the fifth fastest driver from qualifying going out first. When the fifth fastest driver starts his flying lap, the next driver leaves from the pit entry line onto the circuit. This process is repeated until all five drivers have completed a flying lap.

The E-Prix

The E-Prix begins with the power output set on energy-save mode, at 180kw(241hp). Drivers will also have an opportunity to use an additional 100kJ (10kw) during the race Bringing the total power-output to 190kw (255hp) for five seconds in the second half of the race. Fans can vote which driver gets to use the extra power (Fan Boost). The top three drivers with the most votes get to use it however they wish.

All races last approximately fifty minutes and begin from a standing start. Drivers line up into a dummy grid, and burnout their tires while getting into position to start the race. Each driver must make one mandatory pit stop to change cars. This must take place within the driver’s garage or dedicated slot in the pit lane. A FIA steward must observe all pit stops.

They ensure that all pit stops are done safety and correctly. A minimum pit stop time is enforced to prevent rushing and to give teams enough time to complete all necessary checks. The minimum pit stop time starts once the nose of the car crosses the pit entry and stops when the nose of the car crosses the pit exit line.

The Tires

Michelin eighteen-inch treaded all-weather tires are used by all cars. Each driver for every event is given one set of tires, with an option to carry over one front and one rear tire into the next session.

The Charging Times

The Electric Cars can only be charged in-between sessions. Charging the car during qualifying and race is forbidden, as well as during the parc-ferme and scrutineering processes. (Rules and Regulations http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/championship/regulations).

That concludes the rules and regulations for season four of the Formula E season. To find out broadcast times for the Antofagasta Minerals Santiago E-Prix, go to http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/championship/tv-schedule/ and select your country.

Main Photo:
Embed from Getty Images

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