Kobayashi in at the deep end for Formula E debut with Andretti

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Kamui Kobayashi is facing an uphill challenge when he makes his Formula E debut with Andretti in Hong Kong on Saturday due to a lack of running in the electric series’ unique car.

Ex-Toyota, Sauber and Caterham Formula 1 driver Kobayashi was announced last month by Andretti as debuting in the Hong Kong double-header on a one-off deal, having only completed a short filming day run in its Formula E car after missing the official testing period.

Kobayashi’s first extensive run on a proper circuit in a Formula E car will come in practice on Saturday in Hong Kong, leaving the Japanese racer on the back foot for his debut outing.

“The preparation for myself was not brilliant. I just tried to do as much as I could do without having the proper tests,” Kobayashi said.

“I did the filming day, so it’s not on a track or a long run. I had one day in the simulator which makes me more confident with the car.

“Of course I think when I saw the simulator, I thought I knew what I need to do in the car, but it’s a different track. So let’s see tomorrow.

“I don’t really set targets, but I think need to maximize doing what I can do in a short time.”

Kobayashi is only slated to race for Andretti in Hong Kong before handing the car back to Tom Blomqvist, who was named in the seat on the entry list despite not being officially confirmed by the team.

Formula E officials are known to be keen on finding Kobayashi a full-time seat, though, but it remains unclear where the current Toyota LMP1 driver could slot in given the packed 10-team grid.