Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
SAUDIA Ad Diriyah E-Prix – Ad Diriyah, Saudi Arabia
Round 1 of 10 in the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY Series
NEWS & NOTES:
DATE: December 14-15, 2018
QUALIFYING BROADCAST: Streamed live on Jaguar Racing’s Facebook and Twitter channels. Saturday, December
15 from 7:55 AM – 8:25 AM (local time; UTC +3); (begins at 11:55 PM ET on Friday, December 14)
RACE BROADCAST: Streamed live on Jaguar Racing’s Facebook and Twitter channels 12:35 – 13:35 PM
(local time; UTC +3); (4:35 – 5:35 AM ET)
TRACK LAYOUT: 2.495km, 21-turn street course
RACE LENGTH: 25 minutes + 1 lap
KATHERINE LEGGE’S BEST
SERIES START/FINISH: Third electric car race overall and first in the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY. Competed in 2
Formula E races with Amlin Aguri in the 2014/2015 season.
BRYAN SELLERS’ BEST
SERIES START/FINISH: Electric car racing debut.
RLL’S BEST START/
FINISH IN SERIES: Electric car racing debut.
NOTES & QUOTES:
ELECTRIC CAR RACING DEBUT FOR RAHAL LETTERMAN LANIGAN RACING
The SAUDIA Ad Diriyah E-Prix will mark the long-awaited electric racing debut for the team after first announcing the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY program at the LA Auto Show on November 28, 2017. The team’s two-car I-PACE program for drivers Katherine Legge and Bryan Sellers compliments long standing programs in the IndyCar Series and IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
TEAM CO-OWNER BOBBY RAHAL ON RLL’S ELECTRIC RACING DEBUT
The 10-race Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY season kicks off with the “25 minute plus 1 lap” race on Saturday, December 15 in Ad Diriyah, Saudi Arabia. The team is excited to add this new chapter to its history.
“The pre-season testing went quite well but I’m not sure how that’s going to relate once we’re on a proper circuit, surrounded by walls on a track that no one knows anything about. I know that we have been pleased with how the cars have run but it’s really going to be a discovery process for everyone. There are many unknowns such as how it will be to pass other cars, how the car will react over the course of a race, tire and battery use and etc. The first race is going to be a learning experience for everyone and naturally we hope to come home victorious. I’m just excited that we are finally getting going after announcing the program over a year ago and having been looking forward to this date for so long. It’s an exciting time for our team. But for all I think it will be a weekend of learning, maybe some surprises, understanding how these events will flow throughout the rest of the year and so on.”
ABOUT THE SERIES
The Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY is the official support race to ABB FIA Formula E from season five onwards. The championship, a world first, will take place over 10 rounds in nine global cities, with up to 20 entrants competing for a prize fund in excess of £500,000. After becoming the first premium manufacturer to enter the ABB FIA Formula E Championship in 2016, Jaguar has now created the world’s first production battery electric vehicle race series – the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY. The history-making championship is the official support race to the ABB FIA Formula E Championship, with up to 20 cars taking to the grid from season five onwards. The series supports the launch of the Jaguar I-PACE, Jaguar’s first battery electric vehicle, and reinforces Jaguar Land Rover’s future electrification strategy, commitment to electric street racing and ‘Race to Innovate’ mission.
KATHERINE AND BRYAN ON PRE-SEASON TESTING AND EXPECTATIONS
“The testing has gone really well from a team standpoint,” said Legge, who won two races, one pole and seven podium finishes in the GTD class of the 11-race IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship in 2018. “Bryan and I work very well together and have run through all the test items very smoothly with our crew chiefs and engineers. The car has been really fun and different to get used to. And the series have done a very professional job at producing a nicely engineered car and put on fantastic events that have run smoothly. We couldn’t ask for anything else!”
“We have completed four days of testing at two tracks and in different conditions,” added Sellers, who is the reigning 2018 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Champion in the GTD class after he and his teammate won two races, one pole, and finished on the podium eight times in 11 races. “I feel like we have been able to learn a lot along the way and have been very productive in our testing. It has honestly been very difficult because there is a lot to learn. The driving style of the I-PACE is significantly different to anything I have driven in quite a long time. I do however feel that all the teams and all the drivers are finding the same conclusions. That is what is making this series something interesting and different. Our expectations are high. Katherine and I both want to deliver results for RLL but also achieve results because we were chosen to represent Team USA.”
KATHERINE ON BEING AMONGST THE FIRST FEMALES TO RACE IN SAUDI ARABIA
The SAUDIA Ad Diriyah E-Prix will mark the first time women compete against men in a race in Saudi Arabia, and Katherine Legge and Célia Martin will be amongst the first women to take part in a motor race in the Kingdom. Legge understands the significance and is proud to help bring attention to women in racing.
“My main focus will obviously be trying to win the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY, not as a female, but as one of many race car drivers. That would be a perfect way to make history. I know there will be a lot of focus on Célia and I racing in a country that has only just allowed females to drive and I think we are doing a great thing to bring attention to women in racing – alongside the FIA’s Women in Motorsport commission. I have said time and again that the car does not know the difference, so I will just focus on doing the job I am there to do.”
BOBBY RAHAL ON THE SIGNIFICANCE OF LEGGE AND MARTIN RACING IN SAUDI ARABIA
“The race comes at a good time with Saudi Arabia having just let women drive recently. Here you have these two young ladies racing in Saudi Arabia. No doubt that they will give women of Saudi Arabia someone to cheer for and look at with great admiration and respect. These women are representing them in so many ways. I’m sure that will be a big story. I have no doubt that Katherine and Célia will be excellent examples for motorsport and represent the sport so well. It’s exciting for sure.”
BOBBY RAHAL ON THE JAGUAR I-PACE eTROPHY SERIES TO DATE
“It has been an impressive effort by Jaguar to create this series from the ground up. At the very first test, the cars were prepared well. Of course there was a big showing by the international press and, as you would expect, Jaguar launched the series in a first class way and I see that continuing now that it’s time to go racing. Maybe they will set the bar even higher than they already have. Looking back, those who have been involved in the formation of the series will no doubt understand just how hard it is to put a brand new series together and I’m sure there is a little bit of relief on their end that it is time to go racing after having accomplished so much. Congratulations to everyone at Jaguar that has put so much effort in to get to this historical moment.”
KATHERINE AND BRYAN ON WHAT HAS IMPRESSED THEM SO FAR ABOUT THE NEW SERIES
“The professionalism of everyone involved has been very impressive,” said Legge. “Jaguar has made it very smooth and easy on us to get acclimatized!”
“Jaguar has gone to great lengths to prepare this series and make as professional as seemingly possible. It’s been a huge undertaking, but without a doubt they have achieved it. The attention to detail has been impressive. I have also been amazed by their willingness to listen and improve in the short amount of time we have all worked together. This is not a short term investment for them and that is apparent. The series will be very different from many of the others that I have raced in. The track time is super limited and the weekends are very short. It will place a premium on learning fast and interpreting the information in a timely manner.”
KATHERINE AND BRYAN ON THE JAGUAR I-PACE RACING PACKAGE
“I tried not have any expectations of what the car would be like and come in with an open mind so it’s not different from anything in particular,” said Legge. “It’s further along the engineering path than I expected in that it’s already been well tested and refined. There is a lot of high level equipment that travels with us, and not to jinx it but it’s been more reliable and durable than I thought a new series would be. I think the challenges will be getting to know the new tracks quicker than our rivals as the lap times will be very tight. I hope the cars are all equal as we run through the season and keep the racing tight. And the degradation of the batteries is minimal.”
“The I-PACE is honestly not what I expected, it is more,” added Sellers. “I was not certain what the car would look like when we arrived however I was pleasantly surprised. The car is built around Street Car technology but looks and feels like a race car. It has been a lot of fun beginning to learn about battery consumption and conservation, battery regeneration, and energy distribution. One of the biggest challenges is learning how to manage the power available to you. Not necessarily in a race situation, but more in a testing situation. You have to drive enough to get a feel for the car and the changes but you cannot extend your runs to long otherwise you deplete your charge.”
KATHERINE AND BRYAN ON THE EXPECTATIONS FOR THE FIRST RACE
“I think Bryan and I will be strong and from testing I expect the Brazilian team will be too,” said Legge.
“I’m not sure what to expect from the first race,” added Sellers. “The results have been hidden from us so we are not sure what the lap times are and how they correlate to what Katherine and I have done. I do know that Team Brasil has been very strong and seem to have a good handle on what they are trying do. Also Simon Evans has been working diligently on his own program and has seemed to put together a fairly extensive testing run in the days we have been given. I fully expect and hope that the field will be tight. Katherine and I have worked very well together so far and have one goal in mind and that’s to try and get results for the team as a whole.”
KATHERINE AND BRYAN ON SAUDI ARABIA AS A DESTINATION
“I have never been there before, and I’m looking forward to experiencing a new culture and location,” said Legge. “It is expected to be a very good track with fantastic facilities and will be a new experience for everyone involved.”
“I have never been to Saudi Arabia,” added Sellers, “However the locations were one of the most exciting things about the series to me. I am very excited to visit and experience the culture.”