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After visiting Hong Kong for the first time on October 9, the world of FIA #formulae is poised to discover another new venue this weekend as the championship moves on to Morocco for the inaugural #marrakech ePrix on November 12. Some of the drivers, including Argentina’s three-time World Touring Car Champion José María López, who today competes in the all-electric series in the colours of DS-Virgin #racing, have prior knowledge of the 2.97km permanent street circuit.
“I have already won three WTCC races in #marrakech,” he says. “It’s a little narrow but #formulae cars aren’t as bulky as touring cars. I think it will be an exciting race. Our simulator testing suggested top speeds of 210kph, which is 5kph more than we saw in world touring cars!”
Once again, the FIA #formulae Championship teams will be able to count on the versatility and performance of their #michelin Pilot Sport EV2 tyres which were developed especially for the competition’s unique single-seaters.
With the thermometer likely to peak at between 20°C and 25°C, track temperatures are not expected to be too hot, yet sufficiently warm for the tyres to get up to temperature quickly in order to deliver grip, safety and driving enjoyment through the circuit’s 12 turns.
“Marrakech doesn’t pose any particular problems for the Pilot Sport EV2,” observes Serge Grisin, manager of Michelin’s FIA #formulae programme. “Much of the track was recently resurfaced so the conditions won’t be as varied as we have seen at some races. We expect that our tyres will operate in an average-to-high temperature window, and that is likely to mean good grip levels from the start, since the compound of the new Pilot Sport EV2 gets up to temperature more quickly than that of its predecessor.”
Formula E’s first appearance on African soil coincides with the holding in #marrakech of the COP22 climate conference. The world’s top political leaders will consequently be in the city where it will be hard to escape Saturday’s ePrix. A long list of leading personalities is effectively expected to attend the race and see the #michelin Pilot Sport EV2 provide a further demonstration of its relevance and qualities.
Michelin’s #formulae tyre is the only 18-inch tyre to feature in a world class single-seater #racing series. Visually, it resembles a road tyre thanks to its patterned tread, yet the fact that it can deliver such high levels of performance and safety in wet and dry conditions alike is unique. Another feature is its ability to ensure the same level of performance throughout race day which includes two free practice sessions, qualifying, the super pole shoot out (involving the five fastest drivers in qualifying) and the ePrix itself. In #formulae, the drivers never change tyres and only have one set available for the entire day.
This singularity fits perfectly with Michelin’s approach to the environment, since no other FIA-sanctioned championship calls for so few tyres to be made, shipped and recycled. It also facilitates the carry-over of technology, since the data collected on the race track is used by #michelin for the development of mass production tyres. Indeed, the similarities between the #michelin Pilot Sport EV2 and road tyres contribute to easing the track-to-street process, allowing #michelin to use motorsport as a laboratory for development purposes, with its customers as the ultimate winners.
Technical data – #michelin Pilot Sport EV
24/64-18 (front) / 27/68-18 (rear), in accordance with the system used by #michelin Motorsport, i.e. tread band width (cm) / exterior diameter (cm) – rim diameter (inches). This is equivalent to 245/40R18 / 305/40R18 using the road tyre system, i.e. overall tyre width (mm) / aspect ratio (%) / rim diameter (inches). The letter ‘R’ indicates that it is a radial tyre.
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