The most dramatic season of the ABB FIAFormula E World Championship to date continues this weekend with a double header at the 2023 Hankook Rome E-Prix, with both races broadcast live on Channel 4.
The all-electric series returns to the Italian capital with one of its flagship road races at the Circuit Cittadino dell-EUR. Going into Rounds 13 and 14, Avalanche Andretti’s Jake Dennis leads the World Championship by a single point, followed by Envision Racing’s Nick Cassidy.
With more wheel-to-wheel action awaited, here’s all your talking points:
Closest title race ever
Formula E’s trademark competitiveness has been demonstrated in its ninth season and four drivers remain in the hunt for the World Championship crown with just four races to go.
Dennis and Cassidy are ahead by 154 and 153 points respectively, while Pascal Wehrlein (TAG Heuer Porsche) and Mitch Evans (Jaguar TCS Racing) are not far behind with 138 and 122 points respectively.
Championship leader Dennis has been on top form in recent weeks, claiming five straight podiums. The Brit is familiarizing himself with the Formula E podium after finishing inside the top three in an impressive eight of 12 races this season.
If Dennis has a strong weekend in Rome, he stands a chance of being crowned the first British Formula E winner on home soil when the series culminates in London later this month.
However, Cassidy will try to spoil the party for Dennis and is able to pass the Andretti man in the Italian capital. The New Zealander travels to Rome after winning Portland, his third of the season, and will be brimming with confidence at the Circuit Cittadino dell-EUR
But Wehrlein and Evans shouldn’t be ignored either. The pair have been competitive all season bar a few unfortunate retirements and with plenty of points still up for grabs in Season 9, either top four could lift the Formula E trophy on July 30thth.
Emperor Mitch, the man to beat
No driver has had more success in Rome than Jaguars Evans. The New Zealander has three race wins in the Italian capital to his credit, including back-to-back wins in Season 8.
Evans is looking forward to his return to Rome as the perfect place to continue his title fight; “If I could – at this stage of the championship – choose a venue, it would definitely be the one I would definitely want to go to.”
He’s also in impressive form, having moved up from 20th Last time out, he finished fourth in Portland, earning the ABB Driver of Progress award. With his historical and current form on his side, he will be among the favorites to cross the checkered flag this weekend.
Pair race for the team championship
It looks like a duel for the teams’ world championship title between TAG Heuer Porsche and Envision Racing. Germany-based TAG Heuer Porsche is at the top and six points ahead of its British rivals.
As Porsche and Envision’s top drivers Wehrlein and Cassidy battle for the driver’s crown, their teammates Antonio Felix da Costa and Sebastien Buemi will likely play supporting roles to try and get their team across the finish line.
While it’s likely that one of Porsche or Envision will take the crown, it would be remiss to ignore Jaguar TCS Racing entirely. The team, which shares a powertrain with Envision, is currently in third place, 41 points behind its peers.
Their driver duo, Evans and Sam Bird, have won 75% of Formula E races in Rome and if history were to repeat themselves, their first manufacturers’ title in the series could be on the cards.
Maserati seeks home advantage
Legendary Italian racing brand Maserati is hoping to capitalize on home field advantage this weekend in the Eternal City.
Maserati MSG Racing’s Maximilian Guenther and Edoardo Mortara will have the home support on their side as the marque competes in a single-seater World Championship at home for the first time since 1957 when Juan Manuel Fangio was on the podium at Monza.
With two podium finishes in his last three years, Günther is in good form and will look to repeat his predecessor Fangio with a successful drive home for Maserati.
Return to Rome
Rome is the venue for a Formula E race for the seventh time this weekend. The 2023 Hankook Rome E-Prix will take place on one of Formula E’s flagship circuits, the Circuito Cittadino dell’EUR.
The 19-turn, 3.385km circuit is one of the longest in Formula E history and drivers will whiz past iconic landmarks such as the Palazzo dei Congressi and the Palazzo della Civilta Italiana, known as the “Square Colosseum”.
Thousands of fans are expected on the track, which promises a lot of excitement with its mixture of fast corners and overtaking opportunities.
Enter Jonas Blue and Coma Cose
Jonas Blue will headline the 2023 Hankook Rome E-Prix on Saturday for a weekend of entertainment both on and off the track.
“I have a great love of cars and it will be a monumental opportunity to attend this event and see the GEN3 cars on track for the first time. I think it would be quite appropriate to play Fast Car in my set for it. “Show!” said the DJ.
The entertainment doesn’t stop there though and on Sunday fans can look forward to a performance by Coma Cose. The Italian indie pop hip hop music duo will visit the Fan Village ahead of the second race of the double header.
Watch the 2023 Hankook Rome E-Prix this Saturday 15th and Sunday 16th July live on Channel 4 with broadcasts starting at 13:30 BST both days.