Formula E’s eleventh round of the 2018-19 season will unfold across two days this Friday and Saturday, for the 2019 Berlin ePrix.
|Tempelhof Airport Street Circuit|
|Location||Berlin, Germany||Circuit Length||2.375 km / 1.476 mi|
|Opened||2015||First Formula E Event||2015|
|Direction||Anticlockwise||Race Lap Record||1:09.519 – Jean-Éric Vergne (2018)|
The German capital holds a special place in Formula E history, as the only city to have held an ePrix in each season since the championship debuted in 2014/15. Three of the previous four Berlin events have been held at the Berlin Tempelhof Airport (the season two race was held on a street circuit around Karl-Marx-Allee), and the historic former airfield will again play host in 2019.
Being constructed on the expanses of the airport’s apron gives a wide range of possibilities for the track’s lay out. This led to a tight and technical circuit in 2015, a more flowing configuration in 2017, which was then extended for last season. For the first time, there have been no significant circuit changes for 2019, and the 2.375-kilometre, 10-corner lap will again be used.
The Form Guide
As has been the case throughout the season, the biggest change for this year’s race in Berlin is the second generation Formula E car. The outright lap record for this circuit stands at 1:09.438, set by Jean-Éric Vergne last season, and the mark will no doubt be bettered in the new car. The concrete surface of the Tempelhof apron is a unique challenge in Formula E, being both high grip and also having a high level of tyre degradation. With car changes no longer a part of the race format, tyre management throughout the 45 minutes of racing will be more important than ever.
Reigning champion Vergne took a big step towards back to back titles by becoming the first driver to take two wins this season during the last race meeting in Monaco – moving to the top of the championship in the process. The Frenchman will be looking to further build on his momentum in Berlin and has form at this circuit, having finished third here last year. For his Techeetah team mate André Lotterer, currently second in the standings, Berlin is his home race and a chance to build on his consistent season with a victory.
For the Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler team, Berlin was a true highlight last season, as the German team took the maximum possible points on offer. Daniel Abt claimed pole position, fastest lap and the race win, with Lucas di Grassi joining him on the podium in second. The pair currently sit ninth and fifth respectively in the season five standings – di Grassi having taken a victory – with both still in championship contention, so a repeat of Berlin 2018 is a possibility.
Unlike most ePrix, which are run in full on a single day, the 2019 Berlin event will run across two. Practice 1 is scheduled for 15:30 local time on Friday (UTC +02:00), with Practice 2 following at 18:00. Qualifying and Super Pole will commence the running on Saturday from 08:45, while the race will go green at 13:00.
|2018-19 FIA Formula E Championship – Berlin ePrix|
|Date||24-25 May 2019||Free Practice Session 1||Fri 15:30-16:15|
|Free Practice Session 2||Fri 18:00-18:30||Preliminary Qualifying||Sat 08:45-09:30|
|‘Super Pole’||Sat 09:30-09:50||Race (45 min + 1 lap)||Sat 13:03-14:00|
Session times quoted in Central European Summer Time (GMT +2:00)
Images via ABB FIA Formula E Championship