Formula E teams break ground at Antofagasta Minerals Santiago e-Prix circuit

Acronis partner NIO Formula E Team is committed to improvement as the championship moves to Chile, South America.

Drivers Oliver Turvey and Tom Dillmann have certainly had their moments in the opening two rounds, impressive qualifying in Ad Diriyah scuppered by unfortunate technical infringements. And both were looking good for points in Marrakesh until energy management problems hampered their chances.

For Gérry Hughes, Team Principal, such hiccups are part and parcel of motorsport. It’s how you learn and bounce back that really matters.

“It goes without saying that our Season 5 campaign has got off to a slow start and whilst we have taken away a great deal from our experiences of the first two race and test events, the onus is now firmly on us to demonstrate the potential of the NIO 004 chassis,” said Hughes.

“From the work that Oliver and Tom have been conducting in the simulator over the past few days, the new Santiago street circuit looks like a real challenge, and not only from its unique layout and corner combination. However, we relish challenges and so I am very much looking forward to seeing how the weekend unfolds.”

The fact that the new circuit represents a step into the unknown for every driver on the grid means that it is more of a level playing field for all teams and drivers. It’s a factor that Dillmann is keen to take advantage of.

“Santiago is a new layout this year and so it’s a new track for all of us,” said the Frenchman. “We had a difficult round two in Marrakesh, but we also learned a lot and I’m excited to put that into play this weekend. We’re determined to make the progress we know we’re capable of, so everyone will be working hard to try and maximize our performance in Chile.”

Likewise, teammate Turvey is looking forward to a new challenge on a layout that may prove an interesting test.

“I am looking forward to going back to Chile, although the track in Santiago is a new layout with a range of corners that look flowing at the beginning of the lap, to a couple of hairpins at the end of the lap,” added Turvey. “Last year the asphalt was very bumpy so it will be important to get on top of the new circuit characteristics as quickly as possible on race day.”

Top image: NIO Formula E Team in Marrakesh, Morocco. ©Drew Gibson.

Fraser Masefield

Sports news and features writer, web editor and author.