One racing legend and one driver who’s reinvigorated his career in new forms of motorsport will be testing in the newest form of motorsport, FIA Formula E, tomorrow and Friday. The drivers are Gil de Ferran and Scott Speed; the team is Andretti Autosport; the track is Donington Park.
The 2003 Indianapolis 500 winner and two-time CART champion de Ferran, who serves as an FIA Formula E ambassador, will have his first round of open-wheel track action since his retirement at the end of the 2003 IndyCar season. De Ferran also raced an Acura prototype in the American Le Mans Series in both 2008 and 2009, against Andretti’s operation.
“Being an Ambassador and strong supporter of Formula E, from day one I have been very curious and interested in how an electric-powered racing car would behave and handle,” de Ferran said. “I am highly interested in the technical side of motorsports so this has been a great curiosity for me. Obviously I haven’t driven anything feverishly for over five years, so it will be certainly a challenge but something that I am really looking forward to.”
Speed, meanwhile, currently leads the Red Bull Global Rallycross points standings driving a 7Up-backed entry for Andretti with wins in the first two rounds of the season (Round 1, 2). He also competed last weekend in Watkins Glen in a Luna-C backed Lamborghini in the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo series.
“I’m excited to get into a single-seater again,” said Speed, who is the most recent American race driver in Formula One (2006-2007 with Scuderia Toro Rosso). “I expect it to be a very steep learning curve seeing as I haven’t driven anything with downforce in seven years. The Andretti organization has been an amazing company to drive for, and I’m happy to grow my role as one of its drivers while helping out with the Formula E test.”
The team has already confirmed Franck Montagny as its first driver and its second could either be one single driver, or a combination of drivers to be rotated through.