Formula E

Paddock Whispers: News ticker on all the important Formula E topics in Portland

Tobias Wirtz

Tobias Wirtz

With the Portland E-Prix, the 2024 Formula E World Championship is slowly drawing to a close. As always, you can find out what else is going on in the paddock at Portland International Raceway besides the action on the track in the latest edition of our popular "Paddock Whispers" series. We will update this news ticker regularly throughout the weekend.

>>> Robert Wickens drives Gen3 car

[30.06. | 13:15] Canadian racing driver Robert Wickens has completed several laps in a modified Gen3 car in Portland. The former DTM and IndyCar driver has been paralysed since a crash at Pocono in 2018, which is why chassis manufacturer Spark had to make some changes to allow Wickens to steer the race car using only his hands.

"It was only a few laps, but I thoroughly enjoyed the experience, and it left me wanting a lot more," told Wickens afterwards. "Hopefully this will lead to more opportunities in the future and possibly a rookie test. I think right now, that would be the goal for me, to try and get onto the grid in Formula E for the future."

>>> Andretti & McLaren organise raffles

[30.06. | 12:39] Andretti organised a competition at the Portland E-Prix. The prize was two tickets for the IndyCar race at the same venue in August. Meanwhile, McLaren hid two signed race posters in the Fan Village, which the finders were of course allowed to keep.

>>> Logo of Cartoon Network on Envision cars

[30.06. | 11:10] Envision has new logo on its racing cars: Cartoon Network is advertising on the green racers for the first time in Portland. The first joint race has already been very successful: Robin Frijns finished second on Saturday, meaning that the team has achieved a 100 per cent podium rate with the new partner logo.

>>> Nissan drivers as action figures

[30.06. | 10:21] Although Oliver Rowland was unable to make the trip to Portland for health reasons, he was there in a smaller form: The company Artman Customs recreated Rowland and his team-mate Sacha Fenestraz as action figures in racing overalls.

>>> New helmet designs at Porsche

[30.06. | 10:03] The two Porsche drivers Antonio Felix da Costa and Pascal Wehrlein are racing in Portland with new helmet designs. The reason for the visually revised head protection is the Porsche motorsport campaign "Raceborn".

"Team spirit is particularly important to us," the team describes in a social media post. "The crew, the drivers, the vehicle: we all form a unit, and we want to demonstrate that even more strongly by integrating the helmet design – especially now in the final spurt of the season. The helmets match the vehicles and follow our current motorsport campaign Raceborn."

>>> Pride Month: Maserati drives with rainbow lettering

[30.06. | 09:48] Maserati MSG Racing is once again sporting a special livery this year to mark Pride Month: the words "We are everywhere" are emblazoned in rainbow colours on the sides of the blue and black racing cars.

Since 2021, the team has been racing in June with a customised design to show its support for the LGBTQ+ community. The lettering will also be present on the Maserati cars in London.

>>> World Championship decision could be made in Portland

[28.06. | 10:27] After the Portland E-Prix, Nick Cassidy could already be crowned Formula E World Champion 2024. The Jaguar driver, who is travelling to the USA with a 25-point lead, would have to extend his lead over his rivals by a further 34 points in the two US races. However, if Pascal Wehrlein scores at least 25 points in both Portland races together, the title decision is postponed to London.

>>> Andretti with special livery at home race

[28.06. | 09:51] Andretti will be racing with a special design at its home race: the team has applied white stars to the blue stripes of its two customer Porsche cars for the Portland E-Prix, reminiscent of the design of the US flag.

>>> Halo slogans at Porsche

[28.06. | 18:16] The TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team has once again added new slogans to its Halo system at the Portland E-Prix. While one of the two Porsche 99x Electric cars reads "Dude, where's my car?", the other reads "Where's your car, dude?". Both are allusions to the movie "Ey dude, where's my car?" from the year 2000.

>>> Formula E launches "Driving Force" education programme

[28.06. | 17:30] Formula E has launched an educational programme for children aged 8 to 12 in the run-up to the Portland E-Prix: Driving Force is designed to help improve learning and action skills around environmental and social issues. The new programme is aimed at local communities and institutions in the host cities of the Formula E races.

The new programme consists of four separate modules on sustainability topics such as air pollution, renewable energy, circular economy and diversity, equality and inclusion.

>>> Gen2 test for Stellantis junior driver Nico Pino

[28.06. | 16:04] Chilean racing driver Nico Pino has completed a two-day test in the Gen2 car from DS Automobiles. The 19-year-old drove the DS E-Tense FE21 as part of the Stellantis Young Driver Programme in Mallorca. The car was driving in a special wrap that was created especially for the Young Driver programme.

GEN2 is back on track! With @nicopino_piloto behind the wheels and a unique livery design for the Young Driver Programme ?#DSautomobiles #Stellantis #YoungDriver pic.twitter.com/OtYeetCtxn

>>> "The Andretti": Special donut for home race

[28.06. | 14:37] Blue Star Donuts in Portland has added a special donut to its programme for the race weekend: "The Andretti". An 18-hour butter brioche batter with a wild roots cherry brandy glaze, decorated with white chocolate cream cheese stripes, topped with a customised sugar logo.

??️ Time to get your taste buds racing!

We're thrilled to announce our high-speed collaboration with @BlueStarDonuts! This weekend ONLY, they're introducing "The Andretti": their signature 18-hour buttery brioche, dipped in local Wild Roots Cherry Brandy Glaze, adorned with... pic.twitter.com/BsEdR7sCmj

The two Andretti drivers Jake Dennis and Norman Nato have also tried their hand as doughnut bakers, but apparently only with limited success.

>>> Attack-Charge: Next test in London

[28/06/13:53] After several months without any news on the subject of fast-charging pit stops, the FIA has now scheduled another test for the shakedown: All eleven teams must try out the chargers with both cars on Friday afternoon. To this end, the shakedown will be split into two sessions of seven minutes each, with each team having to take part with one car.

After one lap, the cars must return to the pits, be charged with 50 kW, drive back onto the track and complete a timed lap. The power limit of 110 kW that normally applies has been lifted: The vehicles are allowed to deliver 300 kW. The batteries must have a charge level of less than 65 per cent.

>>> Jake Hughes got engaged

[28 Jun | 13:10] Wedding bells will soon be ringing in the Hughes household: Girlfriend Abby has said yes. We say: Congratulations!

>>> Max Günther swaps helmets with Fernando Alonso

[28.06. | 11:52] Maserati driver Max Günther has swapped helmets with the two-time Formula 1 world champion. "You've been inspiring me since I was a kid. It will get a special place," Günther wrote afterwards on the social network X (formerly Twitter).

Alonso founded the driver management agency A14 Management in 2022 in honour of his Formula 1 starting number 14. The agency has been working with Günther since December 2022.

>>> Less time in attack mode again

[28 Jun | 10:03] As in Berlin and Shanghai, there will again be less time in attack mode for the 22 drivers in Portland. Instead of a total of eight minutes, as usual at the start of the season, there will again only be six minutes each. The reason for this decision is of a technical nature, as confirmed by the FIA.

"The duration of the attack mode has been reduced as part of the normal and continuous process of monitoring the life cycle of vehicles. The Sporting Regulations have been specifically developed to allow this flexibility in the format," said an FIA spokesperson when asked by e-Formula.news. According to rumours, it is a problem with the battery from unit manufacturer WAE.

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