Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Electric Motor Racing Returns Driven by a Logistics Industry Giant

Motorsport Back Despite Virus for A Grandstand Season Finish
Shipping News Feature

WORLDWIDE – OK, the link between racing cars and logistics can be viewed as fairly tenuous, however when it involves electrically powered vehicles and major sponsorship from a leading player in the industry that is just about sufficient grounds for us to use a decent image that isn't a ship, plane or truck.

Following the coronavirus-induced hiatus at the end of February, the ABB FIA Formula E Championship is concluding its 2019/2020 season in August with six races in nine days. From August 5 through 13, the teams in the all-electric Formula E series will be competing in three double-headers to be held in quick succession at the historic Berlin Tempelhof airport.

The unfortunate fact, as with so many sporting occasions at the moment, is that the risk of spreading the coronavirus pandemic means the season's final Formula E races will be held behind closed doors, and when the battle for the World Championship title is still wide open!

To make the outcome even more uncertain the track configuration is also being changed for each double-header, creating new challenges for the drivers in each pair of races. The Portuguese driver Antonio Felix da Costa from the DS Techeetah team, who is currently in the lead, is only eleven points ahead of the driver in second place, the New Zealander Mitch Evans from the Panasonic Jaguar Racing team. Currently in third place is the British driver Alexander Sims from the BMW i Andretti Motorsport team.

The requirement to combat the virus means limiting the numbers of people trackside with drivers, racing team members, logistic teams present on site cut from 5,000 to just 1,000 and DHL, a founding member and logistics partner of Formula E, the first all-electric racing series, says it is also taking extensive measures to ensure that its logistics processes are safe and that all the statutory requirements for protection against coronavirus are met.

These include the now usual face masks and social distancing measures plus the DHL team has onsite quarantines and gets tested before arriving at the track. Arjan Sissing, Head of Brand Marketing at DPDHL Group, reflects:

"We are delighted that the innovative and sustainable Formula E series is now able to celebrate its season finale in these challenging times with three exciting double-headers in Berlin. Even though the atmosphere without spectators at the track is of course unfamiliar, the races will undoubtedly be extremely exciting due to the varied track layouts and the fact that very few points separate the top drivers in the championship."

Formula E has already published a provisional race calendar for the upcoming seventh season 2020/2021. The season is due to kick off on January 16, 2021 with the E-Prix in Santiago, Chile, and a total of 14 races are to be held in 12 cities around the world. To help tackle the race for clean air and raise awareness on the importance of air pollution DHL has teamed up with Formula E offering fans around the world the opportunity to make a difference by joining its ‘Send a breath’ initiative. For every participant DHL will plant a tree in the country of a Formula E race location.

With Mission 2050, Deutsche Post DHL Group has also set itself the goal of reducing logistics-related emissions to net zero by 2050. Electromobility plays a key role in this strategy which gives us just the excuse we needed to show that racing car in full flight.