Faraday Future, the futuristic electric car company, has confirmed a multi-year partnership with Dragon Racing to serve as its core technical partner and title sponsor of the team starting with season three of the FIA Formula E Championship.
The partnership was announced on Friday ahead of this weekend’s Formula E doubleheader race weekend at Battersea Park in London.
“Formula E has placed a significant emphasis on electric performance and connectivity which makes it a great fit for Faraday Future,” Marco Mattiacci, Global Chief Brand & Commercial Officer for Faraday Future, said in a release.
“Formula E has leveraged a community of fans and embodies the competitive spirit that we also share.”
Added Nick Sampson,Senior Vice President, Global R&D and Engineering, “Partnering with Dragon Racing allows us to further showcase our electric vehicle leadership and technical capabilities in one of the most exciting Formulas in the world. I clearly see Formula E as the right venue to challenge our engineers and technologies in the most extreme performance conditions.”
“We are thrilled to welcome Faraday Future into Formula E. Faraday Future is a brand that is targeting the highest standard in terms of design, R&D and manufacturing of electric cars,” said FIA Formula E President Alejandro Agag.
“We couldn’t be happier that they have chosen Formula E to challenge some of the greatest car companies in the world. This announcement again proves that Formula E is truly the future of motorsport.”
The team has also confirmed the return of Jerome d’Ambrosio and Loic Duval to return for season three.
The Red Bull Racing pit crew may have already made headlines last weekend when it completed the fastest pit stop in Formula One history, changing Max Verstappen’s tires in 1.82 seconds, but the team’s most recent stunt took their skills to new heights – quite literally.
With the help of the Russian Space agency Roscomos, a group of the team’s mechanics completed the world’s first zero-gravity pit stop, on-board a IIyushin II-76K cosmonaut training plane.
Using a 2005 BR1, the team filmed the viral video over the course of a week, enduring seven flights and about 80 parabolas – periods in which the plane climbs 45 degrees before falling again at a ballistic arch of 45 degrees, creating a period of weightlessness for approximately 22 seconds.
With such a short time frame between weightlessness periods, the car and equipment had to be both quickly and safely secured before gravity once again took effect. Each filming lasted roughly 15 seconds, and the stunt was the most physically and technically demanding activity the live demo team had ever undertaken.
“It pushed us harder than I thought it would,” said Red Bull Support Team Mechanic Joe Robinson. “You realize how much you rely on gravity when you don’t have any!
“It challenges you to think and operate in a different way – and that was brilliant. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity and honestly, I could have stayed and done it all month. It was amazing. I think it’s the coolest, most fun thing the Live Demo team has ever done with a show car.”
Though Red Bull was the first team to perform a pit stop in zero gravity, surprisingly Red Bull was not the first team to put a car through zero gravity. In 1999, McLaren driver David Coulthard and his car experienced zero gravity as part of a promotion for then-sponsor West Cigarettes.
Follow Michael Eubanks on Twitter