FIA Formula E Season 2: Drivers, Teams and Calendar

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The main formula series we’ll be focusing on this weekend is, as you’d expect, Formula 1, which heads stateside to Austin for the fourth United States Grand Prix at Circuit of The Americas.

Not to be overlooked, however, is the FIA Formula E Championship, with the electric open-wheel series set to kick off its second season this weekend at Beijing in China.

Here’s a quick look through the field, with 2014-2015 season recaps, and the 2015-2016 calendar as well:

NEXTEV TCR FORMULA E TEAM / NEXTEV TCR FormulaE 001 

Drivers: Nelson Piquet Jr. (No. 1), Oliver Turvey (No. 88)

SEASON 1 RECAP: Piquet won twice en route to capturing the inaugural driver’s championship by a single point over Sebastien Buemi. His teammate, however, was a revolving door of drivers – Ho-Pin Tung, Antonio Garcia, Charles Pic and lastly, Turvey – all shared the second car throughout the year. Turvey impressed on debut at Battersea Park in London, as the only one of five drivers making their first start in the series to score points.

SEASON 2 OUTLOOK: While Piquet will no doubt factor into the season as he seeks a repeat, Turvey has the potential to star. The McLaren development veteran also has recent sports car experience, where he’s won at Le Mans in the LMP2 class for Jota Sport. Team will look to improve on fourth place in the team’s championship.

RENAULT E.DAMS/ RENAULT Z.E.15

Drivers: Nicolas Prost (No. 8), Sebastien Buemi (No. 9)

SEASON 1 RECAP: The most consistent pair all season delivered Renault e.Dams the team’s championship by a healthy margin, although came up short of the driver’s championship. Buemi won three times and came on stronger as the year progressed, while Prost started quickly – making headlines from the Beijing opener with his last-lap contact with Nick Heidfeld – but faded in the second half of the year after his lone win in Miami.

SEASON 2 OUTLOOK: There’s little to suggest that the Renault e.Dams pair – and new package – won’t be as potent this time around. Prost needs better consistency to match his pace, while Buemi only just missed out at holding two FIA championships simultaneously. He won the WEC driver’s title in 2014.

DRAGON RACING / Venturi VM200-FE-01

Drivers: Jerome d’Ambrosio (No. 7), Loic Duval (No. 6)

SEASON 1 RECAP: Oriol Servia moved out of the cockpit into a team manager role after four rounds, with Audi ace Loic Duval coming into the team from Miami. The Duval/d’Ambrosio pairing was a solid one from there, with d’Ambrosio winning in Berlin and the team banking a pair of double podium finishes in the final four races. It was easily the best performance in team history, as its IndyCar program never achieved those heights.

SEASON 2 OUTLOOK: Dragon will partner with Venturi on its powertrain package. Duval now is set for the full season after finishing strong last year, while d’Ambrosio looks to improve upon his fourth place in the first year.

ABT SCHAEFFLER AUDI SPORT / ABT Schaeffler FE01

Drivers: Lucas di Grassi (No. 11), Daniel Abt (No. 66)

SEASON 1 RECAP: Di Grassi led the championship most of the way before a controversial disqualification at Berlin, and by year’s end he’d fell to third in points. Abt meanwhile had plenty of speed – he had top-seven starts in all but one event through Moscow – but only converted one qualifying effort into a podium all season.

SEASON 2 OUTLOOK: Pace won’t be an issue for this team, and add the motivation from di Grassi wanting to rebound from his hard luck loss last season, and he’ll be a force to be reckoned with. Abt’s weak point last year seemed to be in-race energy conservation, and he’ll have to work better on that this season.

DS VIRGIN RACING FORMULA E TEAM / VIRGIN DSV-01

Drivers: Sam Bird (No. 2), Jean-Eric Vergne (No. 25)

SEASON 1 RECAP: Bird flew to start the year but lost his wings – no pun intended – following his crushing win in Malaysia. A win in London though was a nice cap to his season. Jaime Alguersuari was respectable in the second car but abruptly retired prior to the season finale; Fabio Leimer filled in.

SEASON 2 OUTLOOK: With three-time polesitter Jean-Eric Vergne joining the team this year, Virgin may have the two fastest drivers in the championship. Neither, though, was as consistent as the top three were last year.

AMLIN ANDRETTI FORMULA E TEAM / Andretti ATEC-01 (planned), Spark-Renault SRT01-e

Drivers: Robin Frijns (No. 27), Simona de Silvestro (No. 28)

SEASON 1 RECAP: Second and fourth with Franck Montagny and Charles Pic in the Formula E opener served as exactly zero indication of how Andretti FE’s season would play out. Six more additional drivers later, the team had two more runner-up results, three poles, and sixth place in the team’s championship.

SEASON 2 OUTLOOK: A troublesome preseason testing period forced the team to revert back to the season one powertrain. In Frijns and de Silvestro they have two new, capable but oft-unlucky drivers; in Amlin, they also have an additional new partner. Good potential here, but can they convert the potential energy into kinetic energy? Apologies for the lame scientific pun here.

TEAM AGURI / Spark-Renault SRT01-e

Drivers: Antonio Felix da Costa (No. 55), Nathaniel Berthon (No. 77)

SEASON 1 RECAP: Neither da Costa nor whoever his teammate was – Katherine Legge or Salvador Duran – did particularly well in qualifying, although the Portuguese driver frequently moved forward in the races. A win in Argentina was no less than he deserved.

SEASON 2 OUTLOOK: It doesn’t look promising on paper. The team was the last to confirm its driver lineup and with the older powertain package, is not bound to be a pacesetter. Then again, if the new powertrains have issues further up the grid, who knows?

MAHINDRA RACING FORMULA E TEAM / Mahindra M2ELECTRO

Drivers: Bruno Senna (No. 21), Nick Heidfeld (No. 23)

SEASON 1 RECAP: Mahindra scored all but 12 of its 58 points from the first six races, and then went on a second-half drought. Neither Senna nor his first season teammate Karun Chandhok really factored into the races, and the team was one of only two who failed to finish on the podium in season one (Trulli).

SEASON 2 OUTLOOK: Heidfeld joins Senna this year, with the frequently unlucky German now partnered with the driver who replaced him at Renault F1 in 2011. Funny how that works. You’d expect the team to improve this year, certainly with a podium if not the team’s first FE win.

VENTURI FORMULA E TEAM / Venturi VM200-FE-01

Drivers: Stephane Sarrazin (No. 4), Jacques Villeneuve (No. 12)

SEASON 1 RECAP: The team’s most memorable moment came in the opener with Nick Heidfeld’s scary-looking accident on the final lap at Beijing while battling for the win. Things only went down from there, although Heidfeld inherited a podium in Moscow and Sarrazin took the pole at the season finale in London.

SEASON 2 OUTLOOK: In Sarrazin and Villeneuve, Venturi has gone for the perfect-for-2008 Peugeot LMP1 lineup, but perhaps not the best for modern-day single seaters. Villeneuve will no doubt draw attention, but how will the past Formula 1 and Indy 500 champ adapt to his first regular single-seater season in nearly a decade?

TRULLI FORMULA E TEAM / Motomatica JT-01

Drivers: Vitantonio Liuzzi (No. 10), Salvador Duran (No. 18)

SEASON 1 RECAP: Highlights were few and far-between for Jarno Trulli’s team in its first season on the grid, following a late takeover what had been the planned Drayson effort. Trulli himself qualified well on occasion, but had few results to speak of. The second car was a round-robin with Liuzzi running most of the season, but he, nor Michela Cerruti, nor Alex Fontana ever really troubled the front-runners.

SEASON 2 OUTLOOK: Other than Aguri this is perhaps the least distinguished driver lineup on the grid. Liuzzi remains a driver who occasionally punches above his weight but is far from his peak; Duran had a modicum of good qualifying runs with eighth-to-10th place efforts late last year. Points may be hard to come by once again.

CALENDAR (SEASON 1 WINNER)

The calendar for season two is similar to season one, with two notable changes. The TBA date is yet to be formally confirmed but is anticipated to be at Mexico City, Mexico; meanwhile Paris has its first crack at an FE race, replacing the date that had been occupied by Monaco (Sebastien Buemi won). The TBA date replaces Miami, a race won by Nicolas Prost.

1. Oct. 24: Beijing, China (Lucas di Grassi)
2. Nov. 7: Putrajaya, Malaysia (Sam Bird)
3. Dec. 19: Punta del Este, Uruguay (Sebastien Buemi)
4. Feb. 6: Buenos Aires, Argentina (Antonio Felix da Costa)
5. Mar. 12: TBA* (New event)
6. Apr. 2: Long Beach, Calif., USA (Nelson Piquet Jr.)
7. Apr. 23: Paris, France (New event)
8. May 21: Berlin, Germany (Jerome d’Ambrosio)
9. June 4: Moscow, Russia (Nelson Piquet Jr.)
10. July 2: London, England (Sebastien Buemi)
11. July 3: London, England (Sam Bird)

*Not confirmed, but expected to be Mexico City, Mexico to twin with Long Beach for North American two-race swing.

2023 SuperMotocross Power Rankings after Anaheim 2: Ken Roczen is consistency’s king

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Strength is found not only in outright wins, but also through consistency, which contributed to the rise of Ken Roczen in the SuperMotocross Rankings after Anaheim 2.

Roczen ended the 2022 Supercross season with the knowledge that he urgently needed change, so he declared himself a free agent, signed with Suzuki during the offseason and set upon 2023 with renewed determination. It worked. Roczen is one of three riders in the 450 class with a sweep of the top five and that consistency has given him the lead in the NBC SuperMotocross Power Rankings.

SuperMotocross Rankings Anaheim 2
Like Babe Ruth pointing to the outfield wall, Ken Roczen pointed his way to the Power Rankings lead. – Feld Motor Sports

This formula rewards riders who compete at the front of the pack at the end of the Mains, in their heats, or in last week’s case, the three motos that make up the Triple Crown. Roczen has improved his overall performance each week with a fifth in Anaheim 1, a fourth in San Diego and his first podium of 2023 in Anaheim 2. Can he keep the trend alive with a first- or second-place finish in Houston?

A fall is all it takes sometimes. Last week, Eli Tomac tumbled hard when he pushed wide on the exit of a turn and jumped on top of a Tuff Blox. He remounted after that incident in Race 3 of the Triple Crown, but could only manage a 13th-place result in the moto. It could have been much worse and resulted in an injury, but coupled with a sixth in the overall standings at Anaheim 2, it pushed him down a spot in the SuperMotocross Ranking.

Along with Roczen (and Chase Sexton), Cooper Webb swept the top five in Supercross’ first three rounds. He is knocking on the door of a win and it won’t take long for him to ascend to the top of the box. Webb has two victories in Houston and each of them came during a championship season.

If there is a more determined rider than Jason Anderson, get out of his way. His path to the front of the pack is not always lined with primroses since he often has to pass multiple riders with whom he has had a run-in during his path, but the SuperMotocross Power Rankings are concerned only with raw results – not intention – and Anaheim 2 was Anderson’s best race of the season. He earned his first top-five and first podium with a second-place finish that was aided by a moto win.

MORE: Triple Crown format shakes up A2’s finishing order

Dylan Ferrandis has also been a model of consistency. Last week his Triple Crown effort of 4-6-5 gave him an overall finish of fifth. That came on the heels of a fourth-place result in the season opener and a sixth in San Diego. With no result worse than sixth this season, the numbers add up quite well.

Sexton’s position just outside the top five this week is entirely attributable to his last-place result in the San Diego heat. The SuperMotocross Rankings looks at the past 45 days, so that will affect him for a while, but if he continues to ride like he did in Anaheim 2, he’s going to climb quickly despite that albatross around his neck.

450 Rankings

This
Week
Driver Power
Avg.
Last
Week
Diff.
1. Ken Roczen 84.63 3 2
2. Eli Tomac
[2 Main; 2 Heat wins]
83.25 1 -1
3. Cooper Webb 82.25 2 -1
4. Jason Anderson
[1 Heat win]
80.63 5 1
5. Dylan Ferrandis 78.75 4 -1
6. Chase Sexton
[1 Main; 3 Heat wins]
77.75 9 3
7. Justin Barcia 67.88 6 -1
8. Aaron Plessinger 67.63 8 0
9. Adam Cianciarulo 67.25 7 -2
10. Joey Savatgy 61.00 11 1
10. Marvin Musquin 61.00 12 2
12. Malcolm Stewart
[1 Heat win]
58.75 13 1
13. Christian Craig 56.13 14 1
14. Colt Nichols 56.00 10 -4
15. Dean Wilson 47.50 15 0
16. Tristan Lane 41.00 18 2
17. Grant Harlan 40.67 19 2
18. Justin Hill 40.57 16 -2
19. Logan Karnow 36.50 20 1
20. Alex Ray 36.00 21 1

Supercross Points


The 250 West riders get a couple of weeks off before heading to Oakland for the rescheduled Round 2 and several of them need the rest. Tough weeks for Cameron McAdoo and RJ Hampshire forced them to lose ground in the SuperMotocross points to Jett Lawrence at a time that could prove to play mental games.

Lawrence also had his share of issues at Anaheim 2, but overcame early falls in the first two motos and finished no worse than sixth. Considering that he dropped to the tail of the field in Race 2, that was a remarkable accomplishment and he entered the final race with a shot at the overall win. He narrowly missed that mark, but still has not finished worse than second in three rounds. His lead in the SuperMotocross Power Rankings is safe.

Cameron McAdoo rode with injury in all three Triple Crown motos, so his sixth-place finish was a moral victory. Cameron McAdoo, Instagram

McAdoo said it best in an Instagram post this week: “Woke up feeling grateful that I’m relatively healthy after my big mistake during qualifying yesterday. We made the decision that it would be safe for me to race so I did everything I possibly could to get through the night ending up [sixth overall]. We will work on getting healed up in these few weeks off to come back strong for Oakland!”

With results of 8-7-5 in the Triple Crown and his combined sixth-place result, McAdoo lost significant ground to Lawrence in both the points’ standings and our Power formula. The Oakland race is going to be critical if he wants to stay in the championship hunt because the series will have a long break before returning in Seattle for Round 11. No one wants to sit with negative feelings for that long.

Mitchell Oldenburg has quietly amassed some impressive numbers. His name has not been called a lot during broadcasts, but he has not finished worse than seventh in any of the first three rounds. Themes develop during a season and weekend – and for the moment, this one revolves around reliability. Oldenburg finished 5-4-6 in Anaheim 2 which means he has consistently amassed SuperMotocross Power Rankings points.

Stilez Robertson won his first race of the season in Moto 2 of the Triple Crown. Coupled with a third-place finish in the final race, he leapfrogged Hampshire and Enzo Lopes, both of whom had disappointing outings. He stands fifth in the points’ standing mostly due to a ninth-place finish in the season opener, but each race has been progressively better and that is a good sign.

Sometimes, all it takes is a taste of success. Prior to Anaheim 2, Levi Kitchen’s best Supercross finish was a seventh earned in this year’s season opener. He scored a ninth at Minneapolis last year, but that was not enough to put him on the radar. This early in the season, one strong run can sway the SuperMotocross Power Ranking significantly, but Robertson has earned his way into the top five. More importantly, he’s going to be the object of interest when the West series returns to Oakland.

Next week the 250 East riders mount up in Houston, Texas before they head to Tampa, Florida. The Power Rankings will combine the two divisions, so the riders below are likely to shift dramatically.

250 Rankings

This
Week
Driver Power
Avg.
Last
Week
Diff.
1. Jett Lawrence – W
[2 Main; 2 Heat wins]
89.13 1 0
2. Cameron McAdoo – W
[1 Heat Win]
77.63 3 1
3. Mitchell Oldenburg – W 77.00 5 2
4. Stilez Robertson – W
[1 Heat win]
76.75 6 2
5. Levi Kitchen – W
[1 Main win]
73.75 12 7
6. RJ Hampshire – W
[3 Heat wins]
70.00 2 -4
7. Max Vohland – W 69.29 8 1
8. Derek Kelley – W 63.75 10 2
9. Enzo Lopes – W 63.25 4 -5
10. Pierce Brown – W 61.29 13 3
11. Phil Nicoletti – W 59.25 7 -4
12. Dylan Walsh – W 56.00 9 -3
13. Cole Thompson – W 51.00 11 -2
14. Robbie Wageman – W 50.75 15 1
15. Anthony Rodriguez – W 49.00 14 -1
16. Ty Masterpool – W 47.50 16 0
17. Kaeden Amerine – W 47.50 16 -1
18. Dominique Thury – W 47.00 18 0
19. Austin Forkner – W 43.00 20 1
20. Derek Drake – W 42.33 21 1

* The NBC Power Rankings assign 100 points to a Main event winner and 90 points for each Heat and Triple Crown win, (Triple Crown wins are included with heat wins below the rider’s name). The points decrement by a percentage equal to the number of riders in the field until the last place rider in each event receives five points. The Power Ranking is the average of these percentage points over the past 45 days.

POWER RANKINGS AFTER WEEK 2 AT SAN DIEGO: Ken Roczen moves up, Chase Sexton falls
POWER RANKINGS AFTER WEEK 1 AT ANAHEIM: Eli Tomac, Jett Lawrence gain an early advantage