Formula E

Formula E premiere in India: The XXL preview of the Hyderabad E-Prix 2023

Tobias Bluhm

Tobias Bluhm

For many years, Formula E has been trying to get a race off the ground in India. Supported its teams and partners, including the Indian manufacturer Mahindra, has now succeeded in organizing an E-Prix: The first Hyderabad E-Prix in Formula E history will take place this weekend. In our preview, you can find out everything you need to know about the premiere race in India.

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Hyderabad is probably known only to a few motorsport fans in Europe. The city is with an estimated 10 million Einwohner:innen but the fourth largest in India. Smog, traffic jams and accidents are major problems in Hyderabad's road traffic. Problems for which Formula E wants to find solutions with its technical promises.

But the Hyderabad E-Prix should also have a lot to offer from a sporting perspective. Porsche and Andretti appear to be among the top favorites in the title fight after three completed races. However, many in the paddock expect the factory and customer cars from Jaguar, Nissan and DS to catch up in the coming weeks. Will they succeed as early as next weekend?

City, Country, River

Hyderabad is India's fourth largest city after Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru. Founded in 1590, it grew into a metropolis thanks to the pearl industry and took important political roles in the following centuries. Today, it is the joint capital of the states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh in the northern part of southern India.

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The majority of the inhabitants:inside Hyderabad are Hindu or Muslim. The religions also shape the cityscape: among the most important sights is the 56-meter-high Arc de Triomphe in the city center, with a mosque on its upper floor. The Formula E track is located on the shores of Lake Hussain Sagar. This was artificially created about 400 years ago and resembles the shape of a heart on satellite images.

Fast Facts | Hyderabad

  • Only in November 2017, a metro rail network was inaugurated in Hyderabad. At 67.21 kilometers long, it is more than 23 times the length of the new Formula E race track.
  • In the middle of the Hussain Sagar Lake stands the largest free-standing Buddha statue in the world. It is 18 meters high and weighs 450 tons.
  • One of the most valuable diamonds in the world, the Koh-i-Noor, was found in the Golconda mines near Hyderabad. Several times the 108.93-carat gemstone changed hands:inside over the past centuries. Meanwhile, he is a part of the British Crown Jewels.
  • The imposing Charminar Triumphal Arch can be found on many postcards Hyderabad, but has a serious history: the arch was built to commemorate the end of the plague.
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  • The national animal of India is the Bengal tiger. The big cat can run up to 65 km / h and would take 2:37 minutes for a lap on the Hyderabad Street Circuit.

 

TV & Livestream | The Formula E Race in Hyderabad

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India is four and a half hours ahead of the Central European time zone. Accordingly, Formula E fans in Germany, Austria and Switzerland will have to get up early if they want to follow all of the weekend's sessions. As usual this year, the E-Prix will start as early as Friday with the 1st Free Practice session. All other sessions will run on Saturday night and Saturday morning respectively.

Session Datum Wochentag Start TV/Stream Session Ende TV/Stream TV-Sender/Website
1. Freies Training 10.02.2023 Freitag 11:55 12:00-12:30 12:35 e-Formel.de
2. Freies Training 11.02.2023 Samstag 03:35 03:40-04:10 04:15 e-Formel.de
Qualifying 11.02.2023 Samstag 06:00 06:10-07:25 07:30 ran.de
Rennen 11.02.2023 Samstag 10:00 10:33-11:30 11:45 ProSieben / ran.de

* alle Angaben in Mitteleuropäischer Zeit (MEZ)

In Germany, ProSieben will broadcast the Formula E race from Hyderabad as usual. Qualifying will be streamed at ran.de. All free practice sessions can be followed as usual on the livestream page of e-Formel.de.

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In addition, Eurosport 2 will show the Hyderabad E-Prix in full length, incidentally also in Austria and Switzerland. The otherwise at ORF Sport+ usual transmission for Austrian fans is omitted due to winter sports broadcasts. In Switzerland, pay channel MySports is responsible for the TV broadcast of the electric series.

Stretch | Moguls on the waterfront

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One of the biggest features of the Hyderabad circuit is that Formula E is not the first series to use the track. Back in November, it hosted a round of the Indian Racing League, a small national amateur series.

 

The track winds along the shore of Lake Hussain Sagar. Drivers will have to negotiate a total of 18 turns over 2.835 kilometers. The race is scheduled for 32 laps - plus any make-up laps in the event of interruptions.

The best overtaking spot is likely to be at the end of the long straight in front of turns 3 and 16. However, to give the pit lane sufficient space, the start and finish lines have once again been separated. The attack zone is located in turn 3.

Rearview Mirror | What's Happened Since the Diriyya E-Prix

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While drivers completed numerous laps in their teams' simulators, news-wise things remained rather quiet over the past week and a half. Some teams introduced new sponsors, others rejoiced over Mattias Ekström's victory in the 2023 Race of Champions. In Switzerland, however, is once again courting a Formula E race of its own. Aside from that, however, nothing noteworthy happened.

Qualifying Groups | Breakdown for the Hyderabad E-Prix

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In Formula E, qualifying takes place in two sections: Group Stage and Knockout Stage. For group qualifying, the driver field is first divided into two halves, with all drivers in the odd-numbered championship positions (1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th, etc.) competing in Group A, and the drivers in the even-numbered positions competing in Group B.

The four drivers in each case who were able to set the fastest lap times in their group after twelve minutes will then move into the quarter-finals, where they will duel it out for the best grid positions from then on. For the Hyderabad E-Prix, the following composition results for the qualifying groups.

Weather forecast | heat battle & high humidity

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The Hyderabad E-Prix could become a major physical challenge for drivers. Meteorologist:inside are expecting temperatures of up to 34 degrees Celsius on race day. In addition, there may be unusually high humidity. Man and machine will be pushed to their limits - and the management of the tires is also likely to become a challenge.

Forecast: All Porsche, or what?

The Porsche-powered bolides were the measure of all things in Mexico and Saudi Arabia. In addition to outstanding efficiency, the world championship leader Pascal Wehrlein (Porsche) and Jake Dennis (Andretti) in particular impressed with good performances in fast changes of direction and the cornering speeds. It would be surprising if they could not race for victory in Hyderabad - Porsche and Andretti are the clear favorites!

Nevertheless, Formula E fans should not discount the Jaguar, Nissan and DS-equipped teams. Jaguar, Envision and McLaren in particular looked competitive in Saudi Arabia. If anyone can pose a threat to the Porsche cars, it's probably them. In qualifying, Formula E fans should also keep an eye out for the cars from Nio 333, which experience has shown to have strong brakes, although the Chinese have so far lacked efficiency in the race.

By the way: also in the 2023 Formula E season, our readers:inside have organized a free community typing game round. Who wants to participate, still has until the weekend to submit the first tips or sign up new!

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