Following a disappointing finish in the Formula E season opener in Hong Kong, Audi drivers for the Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler team are preparing for their second race in Marrakesh. The entire team both have ambitious plans for the upcoming race on Saturday. “There is a very strong motivation within the team to bounce back, and that goes for us all,” says Team Principal Allan McNish. “Although we were not allowed to carry the big trophy home after Hong Kong we now know that the Audi e-tron FE04 is a car that can win races. We are taking this positive feeling with us to Marrakesh.”
Although, the track in Marrakesh is a lot different than the track in Hong Kong and more difficult. Though, that’s part of Formula E, adaptive to the drastically different circuits. “You cannot compare the Marrakesh circuit with the one at the season opener, but this is a key thing about Formula E,” says McNish. “You have to arrive perfectly prepared and be ready to adapt quickly to all circumstances on the day. Teamwork counts and that’s one of our strengths. Marrakesh is one of the very few tracks on the Formula E calendar where the team still misses out a podium finish so that is exactly what we are aiming for with both drivers.”
While Audi drivers were stripped of their victory in Hong Kong, Audi driver Daniel Abt feels as if he’s prepared for the new circuit. “Although I was retrospectively stripped of my victory it still feels like we won the race,” says the German. “In terms of ambience, culture and the people, Marrakesh differs a lot from the other Formula E events. Last season, we even rode camels on Friday before the race – that was really special. With respect to some of its sections the track is similar to a city street circuit. There are a lot of walls you should stay clear of.”
Abt’s co-driver, Lucas di Grassi is also confident about their chances in Marrakesh. “Marrakesh has enormous importance for us,” says di Grassi. “We know that we have a strong car that we can rely on, so I’m sure that we’ll be fast again in Marrakesh. The circuit is very special and not typical for Formula E because we’re driving on a permanent race track. Our aim is to close the gap to the top again.”
The race in Marrakesh will start on Saturday, January 13, at 4 PM local time (5 PM CET). In Germany, Eurosport will start to air live coverage at 4:45 PM (CET).