Felipe Massa, Formula E, 2018

Massa expects long-term stay in Formula E

Formula E

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Felipe Massa says he chose Formula E over other motor sport series because he was looking for a championship he could race in for a long time.

Asked by RaceFans whether he expects to stay in the category for the long term Massa said: “I think so.”

“I chose Formula E because I [was] not 100% sure that maybe if I go to WEC or DTM I will be there racing for a long time,” he said.

The former Williams driver consulted current Formula E races including Lucas di Grassi and Jean-Eric Vergne before committing to the championship. Massa said he sees more potential for growth in the all-electric series.

“I think Formula E is more of a possibility for me, how the championship is growing,” he said. “Everything around the event which is not only racing – which is what we [drivers] like – but the idea about the green direction, many companies are really interested. It is an event which will keep growing compared to even the other championships.”

Massa tested a Jaguar Formula E car early in 2017 but had to put his plans to join the category on hold after he returned to drive a final F1 season for Williams. He is now preparing to enter the championship with Venturi when the 2018-19 Formula E season begins in Saudi Arabia later this year.

The 37-year-old has spent two days testing at the Ales circuit in France. He said the car feels “completely different” to what he was used to in F1.

“It’s like a new challenge,” he said. “You need to learn the car, learn everything about the batteries.

“The car is a different mentality to the car I used to drive with Formula One in terms of weight, in terms of speed. But also most of the speed is in the city tracks which I’m sure makes things a lot more fun, interesting for the show, challenging.”

Asked whether Formula E could grow to the point that it becomes a genuine competitor to Formula One, Massa says it’s more likely now than before.

“If you ask that question for me maybe one or two years ago I would say no, impossible,” he said. “Now I don’t say the same.

“I think things change so quickly. I cannot really say that Formula One is unbeatable.”

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7 comments on “Massa expects long-term stay in Formula E”

  1. Miltiadis (@miltosgreekfan)
    5th June 2018, 12:10

    Something that i really like about Felipe, is the decision he takes (along with Nicolas Todt & his family). He doesnt rush into situations, he goes to team with a viable long plan and his character-driving feedback also help teams improve & develop.
    I believe and hope Venturi will improve next year, perhaps like Williams in 2014.

  2. Kinda sad that the main reason for chosing a specific series is how long you can drive there… sure he has his reasons, but it doesn’t sound that good.

    1. I disagree to that @fer-no65 as it seems unlike some drivers he knows his skills reduce as he gets older. But he wants to race. That is great.

      Motor sport is littered with old F1 drivers in other categories all over the world. Some fans expect them to always win as they once drove F1- doesn’t work that way, some these guys are over 60 and still quicker than most of us can only dream – they just won’t to race.

  3. Glad for Felipe. This is were he belongs. He was obviously past due in F1, but still had some talent. FE seems like a perfect rebound.

    1. The only talent he had was his defensive driving. Often, there was a train of cars behind Felipe. I was glad he left F1 after his crash in Brazil 2016. But unfortunately, he returned.
      He makes a race boring, and that is what FE doesn’t need at all.

  4. It is said that Einstein’s reaction to the book “A Hundred Authors Against Einstein” was very amusing. Once aware of such book, he simply smiled and said: “Why hundred? One is enough”.

    During the past decades, “hundreds” of new revolutionary batteries have been announced, promising more energy and fast charging/discharging cycles, which could be used in electric cars which, in turn, could go further and faster than the current internal combustion engines cars.

    Unfortunately, we are still using the same basic Lithium-ion technology invented in 1980.

    On the other hand, paraphrasing Einstein, we don’t need hundreds of new batteries, only one will be enough. If/when this happens, Formula E will be more exciting than F1.

    1. Simon le Bon
      7th June 2018, 23:36

      If you put it that way, you could also say we are still using the same basic battery technology invented in 1748.

      Battery technology for transportation has improved a lot since and we’ve come a long way since General Motors’ EV1.

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