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Formula E is back! Here’s how to watch it and what you need to know

Formula E is back this week with its tenth season. Where does the time go? It seems like just yesterday, Nelson Piquet Jr. was being crowned as the first champion, and Renault was dominating as Teams’ Champions. This is a really special type of racing in motorsports, and every year, it gets a little better. As an extremely competitive series, you will find yourself rooting for a favorite driver or team in no time. It is that exciting. Here is what you need to know to jump in and where to watch Formula E.

What is Formula E?

Image credit fiaformulae.com

Let me start off. You’ll be jarred by the sound at first. It’s like nothing you are used to from racing cars, but you’ll adapt quickly. Ok, we are past that. Formula E is the first fully and prominent electric racing series, with is unveiling to the world back in 2014. This top-level single-seater championship series has been net-zero from the start. Hitting street courses around the globe in cars from teams with very familiar names. We are now in the era of the Gen3 car; it’s faster, more powerful, lighter, and pushing the technology forward not just for racing but for EVs in the wild.

Much like other Formula series, the drivers who complete the set amount of laps in the fastest time win. The top ten drivers will score points per their position after a race is finished, with the winner being awarded 25 of them. Drivers can earn extra points through having the fastest single lap time as well, one point in the actual race and three points from qualifying.

What is most fascinating about this type of car and racing to me is that the drivers can recharge the battery through regenerative braking. With a powertrain at the front of the car, the Gen3 lets drivers get power from all four tires.

Attack Charge is a system only available at some races, where teams can use the charging stations to add more power to the battery. Last season was the first time they were ever allowed to do this when they pitted.

Were you curious about tires? I knew you were. They compete on a single tire type. Crazy, right? Formula E uses 80% less tires than other motorsports. The Hankook iON race tires are designed specifically to handle any and all conditions. And you guessed it, the tires are also developed with sustainability in mind, with plant-based materials (up to 30%), and completely recycled. Using only six to eight tires a weekend sure is different from other racing, where upwards of 80 tires may be used.

One of my favorite things about motorsports is watching the trickle-down of innovation, like how proper motorsports should be. The technology from the engines to the batteries to the tires used is being honed and tested for the eventual availability to the consumer market. Everyone benefits.

Who to know in Formula E

Image credit fiaformulae.com

Eleven teams and 22 drivers make up the garages and grid of Formula E with many familiar names. Nissan, McLaren, and Jaguar, we are certain you’ll find a team and driver to root for.

I’m obviously keeping an eye on former Champion Nyck de Vries as he returns to the series after a less-than-stellar run in Formula 1 with Alpha Tauri. He seems a good fit for Mahindra, and with a very seasoned driver, it will be interesting to see what they are able to do with him in the seat. I am a bit of a cheerleader for Nyck because I do think he was done a little dirty in how he was let go. But we roll on, and so does Nyck.

Last year’s champ, Jack Dennis, has American ties. He races for the one and only Andretti Autosport. Only one driver has been able to maintain their championship from the year before. Does Jack have the literal power to pull this off? Perhaps. With Michael Andretti at the helm, you can certainly understand how Jack became a champion and could be again. See, American teams can be successful, and this is in no way a dig at Gene Haas (nervous look).

Jehan Daruvala is the only rookie on the grid this year, but don’t think that is a disadvantage. He’s pretty pedigreed. If his name sounds familiar, that’s because he is the first and only Indian Formula 2 race winner. Daruvala also holds the honor of being only the second Indian driver to race in Formula E. He will be behind the wheel for Maserati after a full year as Mahindra’s reserve driver. Rookies have historically done well for Venturi/Maserati; Norman Nato, Lucas di Grassi, and Maximilian Guenther all had wins in their first seasons. Maybe there is little magic there.

Now, you know me, and I love a veteran. I’m rooting for Antonio Felix da Costa. He’s participated in every season, is a former Formula E Champion, and races with TAG Heuer Porsche. And you know I’m a fan of Porsche drivers. Never count an old dog out (as they say), and I certainly don’t with this charming man from Portugal.

Formula E season structure

Image credit fiaformulae.com

There are 16 rounds (this year) in 10 different locations, covering Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and North and South America. There was already a bit of drama with scheduling even before the season started. Round 4, Hyderabad E-Prix, was completely canceled due to a breach of contract. This will give the drivers some rest in between the Saudi Arabian E-Prix doubleheader (yay, night racing!) before jetting off to the absolutely gorgeous course at São Paulo. Personally, I’m excited to see what Tokyo’s E-Prix looks like as they host their first Formula E race.

I’ve mentioned before that if you can get to a race this year, please do. (London is partially indoors and totally wild!) Formula E does an amazing job with fan events and creating an atmosphere. They really think about the whole experience. The season kicked off this week in Mexico City. This is an electrifying track that drivers love for the overtaking opportunities and visually stunning layout. Being one of the fastest tracks of the year, there are sure to be some thrills. What a way to start season 10!

Where to watch

It’s actually quite easy to catch practices, qualifying, and the actual race for those in the USA. Free Practice 1 is on Fridays, and obviously, the times will be different for those given locations. You can catch practices on Formula E’s Roku Channel, YouTube Channel, or through their app.

Your Saturday holds Free Practice2, Qualifying, and the Race. Qauli and the feature race will be held for free on that Roku Channel, which is available on most streaming devices. Getting all that content without paying a penny is truly mint.

Additional materials

Racing Green – Kit Chapman

If you want to better understand electric technology in the automotive space I cannot recommend Racing Green enough. It was absolutely one of my favorite reads last year, and I was an EV novice. (check out our EVs Explained series for more!) Author Kit Chapman turns a deep and detailed history with big words and bigger concepts into a palatable and humorous travel tale. You certainly don’t need a degree in physics or aerodynamics to learn about the evolution of electronic vehicle technology.

Formula E: Racing For The Future

This book is in my to-read pile. It’s a true behind-the-scenes look at teams, drivers, concepts, technology, and, of course, the history of the series. This book was written pre-Gen3 car, so you won’t get any insight on that, but it’s still packed with tales of first-hand experiences from the formative years.

Formula E Unplugged

Yes, to use the comparison, this is Formula E’s Drive to Survive. Unplugged! Season 3 is on my “What to Watch in January” list. Seasons one and two of Unplugged are on Paramount +. Season 3 has three episodes out right now on their YouTube channel. New episodes will launch every Monday and Wednesday until February 5th.

Every race from last season is archived for you to watch in its entirety on Roku Channel as well.

Enjoy this historic 10th year, and let us know who you are cheering on.

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Features

Here are the New Year’s goals of your favorite Formula One drivers… probably

A new year is upon us, and with that comes this whole idea we will be new people too. Or at least we will try to be, and make improvements and changes here and there for the next few weeks until we forget. Formula 1 drivers are no different than us. They put on their racing boots on one at a time. Testing in Sakhir is over a month away, and each of the 20 drivers has their sights set on podiums, points, and improvements. If I had to venture a guess into a few of their goals for 2024 this is what I’m certain they are.

Logan Sargeant: Score double points

Image credit: X.com/F1 & F1TV

Logan only needs to score two points to make this happen. Which I think is quite doable. If we completely ignore that his first point in F1 was completely by accident and only happened because of other drivers’ penalties, he did great. He also technically did not finish last, so let’s aim for 19th this season. Now that Logan is no longer a rookie and given a new lease on life by Team Principle James Vowles, how about we also don’t cause the most damage on the grid? All of these are achievable goals, Florida boy. Would love to see him get those points in his hometown of Miami.

Lando Norris: Collaboration With Martin Garrix

Image credit: X.com – Lando Norris

Martin Garrix is the real paddock princess. Any party an F1 driver has, he is there. During his sets, Max and Lando are right behind him. He’s rolling around the garages more than Perelli. 2024 has to be the year Lando gets serious about turntablism and finally makes this happen. What’s the point of one of the best internationally known DJs hanging on your jet, mixing in Monaco, and waiting to take pics with you if there isn’t a creative project in the works? The obvious move would be some sort of reimaging of “Friday” or Lando’s famous rollercoaster radio transmission. Either way, there better be an EP this year.

Charles Leclerc: Daily affirmations

Image credit: Getty

I’m imagining something like Colin from Ted Lasso. A messy-haired Charles stares in the mirror and tells himself he is a strong and capable man, and the car is not a piece of shit. He is worthy of good engineers, and Carlos doesn’t need to be a tactical wizard. He will win in Monza and bring full glory back to Ferarri and the Tifosi. Or at least these are the mantras I’m picturing him scrawling in his bathroom, then lighting a lavender-scented candle and gently rocking himself back and forth. “I am NOT stupid.”

Fernando Alsono: Major internet crossover event

Image credit: Getty

I need Fernando to crossover into every inch of the internet so the entire world can experience him. I am an Alonso Appoogist, and I don’t care. He flirted with a mini-bump into new territories when an absurd rumor was dropped that he was spotted with Taylor Swift. Honestly, you’re welcome, Swifties. Fernando is magic. Watching gossip columnists scramble to understand who he is was a fun moment. And, of course, Fernando ran with it. Our dark lord and savior is perfectly poised for a breakout year in 2024 as far as the interwebs are concerned. But what will the moment be? Personally, hope it’s like Kimi Räikkönen at the 2006 Monaco GP, and he just walks onto his yacht and sails off with the El Captain hat on, spraying champagne on everyone and everything.

Yuki Tsunoda: Starts a cooking channel

Image credit: X.com – Marina Bay Sands

Yuki has done a few teasers in this area here and there. He’s participated in cooking challenges for Alpha Tauri’s social media channels, with much success. Who doesn’t want to see Yuki in his true natural environment? I know he is a busy F1 driver, but imagine if filmed a a bunch of videos where he just teaches other drivers how to cook. Forcing Lando to make sushi but not telling him would be top-tier. Making pancakes with Carlos, how adorable would that be? And reuniting Yuki with his BFF, Pierre Gasly, would be divine. Imagine them making heart-shaped cakes for each other. The sky’s the limit with this. We would also be open to a collab with a popular brand, like Momofuku x Yuki. They could release it in Vegas at one of their locations. Yuki, call me. I’m happy to be a brand agent for you.

Lewis Hamilton: One more World Championship

Just one more Lewis, then you and Roscoe can spend all your time together. Sir Lewy Hammy deserves his eighth (or ninth, if you subscribe to that) Championship. Love him or hate him, no one has been a better ambassador for this sport than him. Pushing F1 and the FIA into a new era, forcing them to look at their failings in diversity is part of his legacy. I would love to see him have a post-F1 career as an F1 Academy mentor or jump on board in a bigger role with Susie Wolf. Whatever Lewis decides will be brilliant, thoughtful, and done with love and dedication. He knows no other way. While I love him dearly, when he decides to retire it will truly be the end of an era.

*My Roman Empire is Brocedes

Danny Ricc: More focused Enchante drops

Image credit: Instagram.com – Enchante

Daniel, we beg you, ease up on the releases. Our poor wallets can’t handle several of these drops throughout the year. I wish he would focus on an actual cafe line. Mostly because I want one of the teacups so bad. What if he did a whole tea set for Silverstone and the British GP? Super on brand. He’s already dabbled in wine, why not tea next? Ric3 tea has a nice ring. As much as I enjoy his releases, they have become rather predictable.

I’m hoping he goes back to the table and thinks outside the box a bit. Like Sir, where is the Aussie collection? Miami was cute. Austin was cute. Monaco was cute. I’m just wanting a little more from a guy who is so funny and creative. Perhaps, providing a wider range of pricing for his fans who don’t feel comfortable spending $250 for a jacket or $100 for a sweatshirt would be a good move as well.

Max Verstappen: Ease up on the Red Bull

Image credit: Red Bull

I genuinely worry about Max. His blood has to be mostly Red Bull at this point, and/or champagne. With the reports of Panaera Charged Lemonade killing people, I can’t stop thinking about this. Does he actually consume all the copious amounts of taurine he seems to in post-race interviews or on his live streams after hours of sim racing? Is it all just a ruse, and those cans are filled with water? Is he really the most hydrated driver on the planet? The jury is out on this one. But I’m thinking let’s just cut back a little Max, or switch to sugar-free.

Haas: One pole, just one

Image credit: Haas F1

Let me be delulu in 2024. I’m a big fan of Team Dad, plus Haas is American-owned. Last year, they had such an American promo that I so hope is back. Dubbed the “We Score, You Score” program at the Miami Grand Prix, official sponsor Chiptole agreed to give away 10,000 burritos if Haas ended up in the points. I say do it for every race. Finishing dead last in the constructor standings (with twelve points), doesn’t seem like a huge risk. And if anyone deserves to be on the podium it’s Nico Hulkenberg, who scored a third of those points and drives like a madman in one of the worst cars on the grid. Not to be overshadowed, K-Mags also had moments of qualifying brilliance.

My heart just says Haas is due for huge improvements and a spot on pole. With the exit of Guenther Steiner after eight years, and engineering director Ayao Komatsu stepping in to take over, big things are on the horizon.

Valtteri Bottas: Retires in Budgy Smugglers

Image credit: Instragram.com – ValtteriBottas

Valtteri is a man of many talents and ventures. He’s just an F1 driver for the heck of it. Valtteri has been thinking about a life post-F1 and planning accordingly. With ownership stakes in a gin company, a coffee company, and a wine company, he’s got his bases covered, unlike his own base. The famously bare-bottomed Formula 1 driver, who feels more Australian than Finnish, is poised for great things when he hangs up his gloves. His longtime girlfriend, Tiffany Cromwell, is a partner in those business undertakings as well. And as a road and gravel cyclist, you can certainly see her influence on him as he’s taken to the bikes quite well. Who knows, maybe we see Valtteri Bottas Cycling Champion in the future.

Before we get there, I would love nothing more than for his last race to end with him stripping off his suit to reveal a pair of custom farewell “Budgy Smugglers.” And then he and Tiffany literally cycle off together. A girl can dream for her favorite driver.

Honorable Mention: Nyck de Vries: Formula E Champion (again)

Image credit: Mercedes

What a beautiful middle finger that would be to F1 naysayers and Helmut Marko, not that he cares but still! I have a soft spot for Nyck and don’t know if it was the right move to let him go so quickly. I’m wishing Nyck all the success in Formula E this season with Mahindra Racing. And every time he gets on the podium, I will do a little clap. There can be more than one fantastic Dutch driver in a Formula series.

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Features

Spend January with these racing docuseries and get ready for every new season

As we patiently wait for all the new seasons of racing to start, there are plenty of amazing car nerd documentaries and racing docuseries to get you revved up. Call it the Drive to Survive effect, but more and more areas of racing are following this model. Now, that is in no way a bad thing. Putting these series in front of more people is a good thing. I’m selfish, so I applaud this because I’d love to talk about Formula E without getting met with a blank look. If you’ve ever been curious about any of these types of racing, January is a great time to jump.

Brawn: The Impossible Formula 1 Story

Yes, I have to start here, and I’m not sorry. Aside from being an amazing docuseries about a time in F1 that isn’t likely to happen again, it features my one true love, Jenson Button. Sorry, World Champion Jenson Button. Not to sound like Stefan from SNL, but this docuseries has everything: a cheating scandal, financial ruin, infighting, betrayals, defeats, and triumphs. This was such an amazing series, especially to see a snapshot of this very significant time in F1 from the perspectives of so many of our favorite former drivers. It’s also wild to see young Christian Horner and young James Vowels.

Keanu Reeves is excellent, perfectly creating drama, tension, and humor in the interviews. Jenson is as charming as you would expect. With his return to racing at full capacity this year, I hope this creates more Button fans. This series is well worth watching; each episode leaves you wanting more.

Michael Fassbender: Road to Le Mans

I spent a lot of last years talking about Le Mans; I mean, it was the centennial of the race, so it was only fitting. I got to speak with Parick Long, a long-time Porsche driver at Le Mans, and got some real insider knowledge. We talked specifically about the influx of actors turned drivers as he trained and raced with Patrick Dempsey. We touched on Micheal Fassbender, who was participating for the second time with Proton and driving a Porsche 911. This is a great look into the craziness that goes into getting the mind, body, soul, and car ready for the legendary 24-hour race. Fassbender, in no way, is just another pretty face or arrogant actor thinking they can just hop in and command a car of this caliber. LeMans requires so much more than grit and money. It takes tenacity, heart, and a little luck. This documentary perfectly encapsulates that. If you know nothing about Le Mans, this is an excellent place to start. Mark your calendars for June 15th and pop on MotorTrend, where you can watch the entire race. There is nothing in the world like it; it is truly unique.

Formula E Unplugged Season 3

In less than two weeks Formula E starts its 10th season in Mexico City. Aside from being a decade old now, this is the biggest calendar season they have ever had, with 17 races scheduled. If you aren’t familiar with Formula E, it is the top level of electric single-seater racing. It’s just as fast, fun, and aggressive as Formula 1. If you’ve never been to a race, I highly recommend you catch on this season. I recommend London; it’s indoors and unlike anything you’ll ever experience. But I digress. There is more than enough time to catch up on seasons one and two of Unplugged on Paramount +. Season 3’s first episode just dropped on YouTube. New episodes will launch every Monday and Wednesday until February 5th. You will get an in-depth look at the previous season and understand the personalities and intensity of this series. Keep an eye on our site this season. I’ll be happy to walk you all through this celebratory year. If you want a little more on Formula E and the science behind EV racing, check out Racing Green. It’s a book I recommend a lot.

PS. Justice for Nyck de Vries, if you know, you know.

500 Days to Indy

This six-episode series is about the preparations for the Indy 500 and is the most ideal introduction to IndyCar. As I’ve mentioned in other articles, I have loved seeing the trickle of interest from F1 into the other series, specifically IndyCar. It is a more palatable type of driving/system for Formula 1 fans to digest. Because everyone wants a DTS hit, IndyCar came together with the CW for this production. Without any prior knowledge, you can jump into this and get a feel for how special this race is, but also how significant it is to motorsports history. It’s one of the most famous races in the world. Also, Fast Friday is one of my absolute favorite ‘holidays’ in motorsports. Don’t worry, you’ll know what I’m talking about soon. IndyCar’s new season kicks off in St. Petersburg on March 10th.

(Full disclosure: I love every single one of the McLaren drivers in this series. )

Drive to Survive: Season 6

Honestly, the DTS hate has to stop. Is it as spectacular now as in the earlier seasons? No. Netflix picking and choosing what to show, how to show it, and how to edit is their prerogative. All reality TV knows you have to create villains and storylines to keep audiences engaged. The DTS producers are no different. You do have a special advantage if you watched the previous seasons of knowing the truths and real drama. But hey, for someone who has no idea about F1, it’s not a bad thing to me if people learn about Fernando Alonso or Guenther Steiner through this show. This should be an interesting season, I’m hoping to see more behind the scenes of Vegas, because my god. Season Six will air in its entirety on February 23rd, with the first race of the season following on March 2nd.

Keep an eye out for…

NASCAR Full Speed

Not to be outdone, NASCAR has tossed their hats into the DTS ring. I will say Netflix is getting better with each of these shows, in how they cover sports and live events. Will lightning strike twice for them? Perhaps. Rather than focus on a whole season, this show will solely focus on the Cup Series playoffs and Championship race from this past year. (Again, of which I had feelings.) This series is expected to be five episodes at 45 minutes each. They teased an early 2024 release, and it will drop on January 30th, just a few weeks before the 66th running of the Daytona 500 takes place. This kicks off the new season officially.

Logan Sargeant: The Step Up

Williams Racing has teased this as something longer, but if not, this is a nice look inside the experiences of a rookie. I am glad James Vowels is giving Logan another shot to prove himself in F1. Yes, he is the first American to score points in the series this century, but there is definitely something special about him. You don’t get to Formula 1 without being talented and having a heck of a lot of potential. Really hoping for a better season for him and Williams in 2024.

The Lionheart

Image credit: Tribeca Film Festival

All my fingers are crossed that this documentary on Dan Wheldon gets major distribution/released this year. It made the festival circuit rounds to very positive reviews. Dan was an absolute legend of IndyCar. Over a decade after his passing at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, his story certainly has a place in Indy history. Dan was an absolute force, loved both on and off the track. This is his story as it is now his two sons, Sebastian and Oliver, who are racers as well. It is a tribute, and it is part of coping after a life-changing loss. HBO is said to still have the rights, so I’m praying it gets a Max release this year.

Honorable Mention: Win The Weekend

This came out last year, but it is perfect for those who are IMSA curious. It’s eight episodes and is a great way to spend a weekend. Get a first-hand look at the dashes of Acura, BMW, Cadillac, and Porsche. Last season, IMSA also introduced an electrified hybrid GT Prototype, pushing the tech of the sport forward in a fast-paced way only they could cook up. The 2024 IMSA starts January 19th with the 24 hours of Daytona.

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