After some incredible hard work and dedication from all partners involved, the time has finally come for the FIM Enel MotoE World Cup to go racing. Preseason testing went well, including an E-Pole and race simulation in Valencia, and the grid of 18 riders are more than raring to race.
The Sachsenring hosts the history-making weekend; a tight and twisty track that should be a stunning venue for MotoE’s debut – with the machines having shown some impressive corner speed in testing. So who could take the first win?
In the race simulation in Valencia, it was Brazilian Eric Granado (Avintia Esponsorama Racing) who took victory, beating the man who’d taken the first E-Pole – Hector Garzo (Tech 3 E-Racing) – to the flag. Finnish rider Niki Tuuli (Ajo MotoE) completed the podium, and all three have been consistently near the top of the timesheets in each testing. The fastest man overall in the Valencia test, however, was Bradley Smith (One Energy Racing)…and he didn’t race. He was on MotoGP™ test duty in Barcelona as the simulation took place, so he’ll be one to watch when the lights go out.
Nico Terol (Openbank Angel Nieto Team) came fourth in that first race and was a key mover up from where he’d qualified, just beating Matteo Ferrari (Trentino Gresini MotoE), with the likes of Xavier Simeon (Avintia Esponsorama), Mattia Casadei (SIC58 Squadra Corse) and Mike di Meglio (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) in a close fight behind. Alex De Angelis (Octo Pramac MotoE) and Niccolo Canepa (LCR E-Team) were next up and just got the better of Jesko Raffin (Dynavolt Intact GP), with Maria Herrera (Openbank Angel Nieto Team) in P11 and looking for more after losing out slightly over race distance compared to her qualifying.
Kenny Foray (Tech 3 E-Racing), Lorenzo Savadori (Trentino Gresini MotoE) and Sete Gibernau (Join Contract HP 40) will be three more names looking to move forward, as well as Josh Hook (Octo Pramac MotoE), who was ill in Valencia, and Randy De Puniet (LCR E-Team), who crashed before the race. But everything we have to give us a clue of how the race will shape up has been at very different tracks – so how will the Sachsenring compare?
The fastest laptimes from all the riders are close, so whilst testing has seen a few names rise to the top more than once, the level of competition will surely be high. After Free Practice on Friday, tune in for the first ever E-Pole session on Saturday 6th July at 16:00 (GMT +2), before history is made on Sunday as the first ever race begins at 10:00.