ABT CUPRA with new driver pairing at home race in Berlin

Home race under new auspices: ABT CUPRA presents a new driver pairing at the two races in Berlin this weekend (11 and 12 May). Kelvin van der Linde, who normally drives for ABT in the DTM and the 24-hour race on the Nordschleife, will start alongside Lucas di Grassi. The 27-year-old South African already competed in three Formula E races at the beginning of last season and made a strong impression, and continues to be part of the team this year as a reserve and simulator driver.

Regular driver Nico Müller had been given the go-ahead by the team to compete in the WEC race at Spa at the same time. Even though the Swiss driver, who recently impressed with two starts in the duel phase of qualifying and strong races, will be absent, the goals remain the same: to score more points. So far this season, ABT CUPRA has scored points three times with its two drivers and missed the top ten by just one place three other times.

The venue for the two-day Berlin E-Prix is the former Tempelhof Airport, where the organizers have designed a largely new track layout. The track is now 2.343 kilometres long. There will be 40 laps on Saturday and 38 on Sunday, both races starting at 15:00 CEST.

This time the event will not end after the two races: On Monday, Formula E will host the traditional Rookie Test in Berlin, which gives drivers who have never competed in a Formula E race a chance in the cockpit. For ABT CUPRA, Formula 3 driver and Red Bull Junior Tim Tramnitz and ABT DTM driver Ricardo Feller will take over the race cars with the starting numbers 11 and 51. Sessions of three hours each are scheduled for the morning and afternoon.

Thomas Biermaier, ABT CEO and Team Principal: “Full of challenges”
“The anticipation for our home race in Berlin, where we have already celebrated so many successes, is of course great. But also the tension, because it will be a weekend full of challenges: two days with a full schedule, many guests, a new track layout, a new driver in Kelvin alongside Lucas and as an encore a rookie test with two interesting drivers on Monday. We want to stay cool, have two smooth race days and take home as many points as possible.”

Kelvin van der Linde, #51: “I have a good feeling”
“It’s exciting to be back with the Formula E team for a weekend. Nico is having a strong season, but of course I will do my best to represent him worthily. I have a good feeling. I’ve already prepared myself in the simulator, for the track, but also for energy management and the best strategy. The new layout is a typical Formula E circuit with long straights, where we are sure to see some exciting racing.”

Lucas di Grassi, #11: “Very important for me and my team”
“Berlin is like a third home race for me, after São Paulo and Monaco. The event in Germany’s capital is also very important for my team, as many guests, sponsors, partners and friends will be here. Even though the track layout is new this year, the very special atmosphere on the track remains the same. I’ve already had some fantastic moments in Berlin, as well as a few defeats – we’ve prepared ourselves in the best possible way to add another great experience or two.”

Did you know that ...

... Nico Müller is coming straight from Spa to Berlin to spend Sunday with the team?

... the two rookies Tim Tramnitz and Ricardo Feller will also arrive in Berlin on Saturday?

... at the official autograph session on Sunday (12:30 in the pit lane) five racing drivers will sign autographs in front of the ABT CUPRA garage as a result?

... the state of Berlin is honoring Formula E with a senate reception on Friday afternoon, which Thomas Biermaier will also attend?

... more than 200 media representatives and photographers have been accredited for the E-Prix?