New Formula E machine to have public debut in Las Vegas

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After running its first test last month in France, Formula E’s all-electric Spark-Renault SRT_01E racer is now set for its first-ever public demonstration in Las Vegas on Jan. 6, 2014.

Formula E development driver Lucas di Grassi will be behind the wheel as part of a special event for invited guests, media, and the public at the Mandalay Bay resort and casino.

The demo will take place in conjunction with the International Consumer Electronic Show and will also mark the SRT_01E’s first-ever appearance in the United States.

“It’s going to be a fantastic spectacle and a great way for us to start the New Year in a very positive way,” Formula E Holdings CEO Alejandro Agag said. “2014 is, of course, a very big year for Formula E with the championship starting in Beijing in September.

“Before then, we want to showcase this amazing fully-electric car to as many people as possible so they can see, and hear, what to look forward to.”

Designed and built by French company Spark Racing Technologies, the car has also been created with the help of Dallara (chassis), Williams (battery design), McLaren (powertrain/electronics), Renault (system integration), and Michelin (tires).

The car was first unveiled in Germany during this fall’s Frankfurt Motor Show.

Ricciardo set to see Dale Jr.’s final Texas ride in two weeks (VIDEO)

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We’ve written before about Daniel Ricciardo’s love of Dale Earnhardt and his love of the No. 3, which Ricciardo has selected as his permanent number for the duration of his Formula 1 career. And additionally, Dale Earnhardt Jr. has offered up the opportunity that one day Ricciardo could race a JR Motorsports car in NASCAR Xfinity Series competition, and Ricciardo has said he’d be up for it.

And although Earnhardt Jr. has only used the No. 3 on a handful of occasions in his career in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, Ricciardo knows how much the number means to the NASCAR veteran as he prepares for his final few starts in the Cup Series the tail-end of this year.

After the Mexican Grand Prix next week, Ricciardo is set to stay in North America for the off-week between the Mexican and Brazilian Grands Prix.

In that break, he said he’ll see Earnhardt Jr. in person at the Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway (Sunday, Nov. 5, 2 p.m. ET, NBCSN) to ensure he gets to see him before he retires from full-time competition.

Ricciardo explained his planning during Thursday’s pre-race edition of the NBC Sports Group original digital series Paddock Pass, speaking to NBCSN’s Will Buxton at the United States Grand Prix at Circuit of The Americas in Austin.

“Well I’ll see him for the first time in Dallas. I’m gonna go to the NASCAR race in two weeks time at Texas Motor Speedway,” Ricciardo told NBCSN.

“Yeah, so, I gotta see him race before he hangs up the helmet.

“The Earnhardt family is a huge name in motorsport, not only in America but all over the world. Yeah I wish him well.”

Ricciardo is also optimistic he’ll get the chance to do a helmet swap with Earnhardt Jr. at the event.

“Hopefully I get to see him perform well in Texas. I’m gonna try to do a helmet swap with him. We’ll see how we go.”

Stay tuned for more on this over the coming weeks.