Formula E

Title showdown in Montreal: Buemi or di Grassi?

Key Takeaways

  • Season finale of FIA Formula E in Montreal
  • Title decider between Sebastien Buemi and Lucas di Grassi
  • DHL eChampions Award winner to be announced
  • Montreal: Transportation Electrification Strategy as key to reducing CO2 emissions

FIA Formula E is heading to Montreal for the final race weekend of the season. The two races in the Canadian metropolis will decide whether Sebastien Buemi can defend his title or if Lucas di Grassi will become the new champion.

The race series is once again entering new territory just two weeks after the successful premiere of the New York ePrix, the first ever zero-emission event in the history of FIA Formula E. Canada is hosting Formula E for the first time, the final two ePrix of the season will be staged on the Montreal Street Circuit.

After DHL successfully delivered the Championship, including the 40 electric racing cars, lithium-ion batteries, charging stations, garage equipment and track infrastructure for the ten teams from Berlin to New York, trucks were then used for the onward journey to Montreal. Once the races in Canada are over, the Formula E circus will head by ship back to Donington in the UK which is where the series is headquartered.

Montreal: 10 strategic goals to reduce CO2 emissions

Montreal is the perfect place to finish an exciting Formula E season. The Canadian metropolis on the St Lawrence River lives motor racing, as the annual pilgrimage to watch Formula 1 racing shows, and has bold plans to increase the electrification of its transport infrastructure.

As part of the commitments of the COP21 Climate Summit signed by Canada in 2016, Montreal has pledged to get its CO2 emissions down by 30 per cent compared to the levels of 1990 by 2020. A key part of this is the Transportation Electrification Strategy. This is made up of 10 strategic goals:

  • Incorporate transportation electrification needs into the planning and management of the city's housing stock
  • Convert the municipal fleet of combustion engine vehicles to electric vehicles
  • Implement an economic development action plan to develop a local transportation electrification and intelligent transportation sector
  • Create an institute on electrification and intelligent transportation
  • Electrify the public transportation network operated by Montreal's municipal transportation agency
  • Participate actively in the Reseau Electrique Metropolitan
  • Implement the electrification measures set out in the Parking Policy
  • Roll out a network of charging stations to support the desired gradual conversion of Montreal's automobile stock
  • Implement a framework to facilitate the private sector roll-out of a self-serve network of electric vehicles
  • Ensure ongoing collaboration with public and private partners in the electrification initiatives and in the promotion of sustainable mobility

As part of these goals, the city is in the process of installing a charging network with the aim of having 1,000 in place by 2020. Key to this was joining the Hydro-Quebec Electric Circuit in 2013. This is Canada's first public network of charging stations for electric vehicles, powered by clean and renewable energy. Hydro Quebec is the sponsor of this weekend's ePrix.

Denis Coderre, the Mayor of Montreal, said: “Municipalities are increasingly being asked to take a more significant role in the fight against climate change, and Montreal plans to act as a model for other cities around the world. The Transportation Electrification Strategy includes 10 strategic goals to create an environment that will foster innovation and support the transition to renewable and sustainable energy forms.”

DHL eChampions Award winner to be announced

The winner of the DHL eChampions Award will be selected this weekend. DHL has teamed up with Formula E to create the award to recognise the unsung heroes that work tirelessly behind the scenes to help make the all-electric racing series the fastest-growing form of motorsport in the world. Formula E and DHL invited all the teams to nominate those individuals or departments who drive excellence, innovation and pioneering spirit.

Follow this link to the voting page for the DHL eChampions Award

The destination of the DHL eChampions Award will be decided by fans in a voting process that continues until Saturday. The finalists are Mahindra Racing, Venturi Formula E Team, ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport and DS Virgin Racing. The winner will be announced at the gala dinner on Sunday evening.

Ten points separate Buemi and di Grassi

From a sporting point of view, the main focus at the Montreal Street Circuit is obviously on the battle between Sebastien Buemi and Lucas di Grassi. After the two races in New York, which Buemi missed due to his FIA WEC commitments, the Renault e.dams driver's lead on di Grassi is now only ten points. An exciting showdown is guaranteed with 58 points to be awarded in Canada for pole position and fastest race lap.

"It was very strange not to race in New York so I am very happy to go to Montreal and meet the team again to race for the season finale", says Buemi. "We still have a good chance to keep both our titles. Therefore, I will prepare for this weekend’s ePrix in a normal way. We will try to do the best we can. I hope we can finish this season on a high. I am really looking forward to it."

We'll go on fighting to the end.

Lucas di Grassi

Lucas di Grassi: "We're coming to the finale and have a chance to secure the title – this is the current position that the whole team has worked hard to achieve. Séb and Renault have made a formidable combination that has proved hard to beat this season. Still, we've done it before, and we'll do everything we can to beat him again in Montreal. We'll go on fighting to the end."

The track is one of the longest on the calendar at 2.745 kilometers and promises to be very exciting with its mix of long straights and tight sequences of turns. Drivers have to complete 35 laps of the circuit on Saturday and 37 on Sunday.

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