Former System E champion Lucas di Grassi has joined Mahindra Racing. The Indian squad hasn’t revealed the precise time period of di Grassi’s contract, however it’s understood to be a long-term deal. He’ll be racing alongside Oliver Rowland from subsequent 12 months.
· Di Grassi gained the 2016/17 System E title
· Shut ties with Mahindra’s new buyer group Abt
Di Grassi replaces Sims at Mahindra Racing
Di Grassi has been competing in System E for the reason that very inception of the all-electric championship and even gained the 2016/17 title. Following his latest victory on the 2022 London E-Prix, he equalled Sebastien Buemi’s report of 13 wins and in addition has a report 38 podiums to his identify. The 38-year-old can even be making his 100th E-Prix begin in Seoul later this weekend.
He’ll be changing Alexander Sims, who after 4 seasons in System E has determined to depart the championship to deal with his endurance racing profession. Oliver Rowland is ready to stick with the group.
Each Rowland and di Grassi can be a part of Mahindra Racing’s Gen3 testing programme earlier than Season 9 kicks off in January 2023. It’s going to mark the debut of the brand new Gen3 automotive, which has been pegged as System E’s quickest, strongest and sustainable race automotive but. After all, Season 9 can even see System E come to India for the very first time, with the Hyderabad E-Prix confirmed for February 11.
Dilbagh Gill, CEO and group principal of Mahindra Racing is hoping di Grassi’s signing will assist the group take some strides in direction of its first System E title. “Our ambition is for Mahindra Racing to turn into FIA System E World Champions and Lucas’ expertise and drive can be instrumental in reaching this,” he stated.
Mahindra Racing has suffered a dismal season this 12 months, with the Indian group down in ninth place with simply 25 factors. Gill has largely attributed this to the truth that guidelines required the group to proceed with basically the identical automotive as final season, mixed with the brand new “merit-based” qualifying format. However subsequent 12 months will roughly wipe the slate clear with the all-new Gen3 vehicles.
The Abt connection
Mahindra Racing lately additionally introduced that Abt Sportsline is its first buyer racing group. The deal will see Mahindra provide its ZF-developed powertrains to Abt, because the group returns to System E in 2023 after a 12 months away. Each events are additionally collaborating on software program and improvement.
Di Grassi, after all, enjoys shut ties with Abt himself, having collected 12 out of his 13 wins – and his title – with the group (which partnered with Audi again then).
“Becoming a member of Mahindra represents a brand new problem in my profession and the timing couldn’t be higher: with the introduction of Gen3 in season 9 of the FIA System E World Championship, everyone seems to be ranging from scratch. Having a seven-year relationship with ABT Sportsline, through which we gained the world championship collectively, will give us a very good springboard – the group will use the Mahindra Racing powered by ZF powertrain and this extra information and my shut connection to the engineers will stand us in good stead,” di Grassi stated.
“The short-term goal is to win races and long-term is to assist Mahindra Racing to win the world championship and turn into an icon in electrical racing worldwide. We are going to construct an thrilling and sustainable future collectively.”