The Diriyah E-Prix in Saudi Arabia added some sparkle to Formula E. Roughly 170 lighting masts transformed the 2.495-kilometre street circuit around the UNESCO World Heritage Site into a sea of light, giving races two and three of the 2024 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship a spine-tingling atmosphere.
Race one of the double-header on Friday evening thrilled spectators in the grandstands in the Saudi Arabian desert. After some exciting battles and the perfect race strategy, it was reigning Formula E champion Jake Dennis (GBR/Andretti Formula E) who crossed the finish line in first place. “It was a good race for us. We must have had decent grip to have won the race by that kind of margin – that was rather special. The tyres really coped well,” said the 28-year-old, praising the Hankook iON Race. He was followed in second and third place by pole-sitter Jean-Éric Vergne (FRA/DS Penske) and Nick Cassidy (NZL/Jaguar TCS Racing).
On Saturday, Jaguar-driver Nick Cassidy from the Jaguar TCS Racing team took his place in the Formula E history books as the winner of the desert race. Robin Frijns (NLD/Envision Racing) was runner-up, finishing ahead of Oliver Rowland (GBR/Nissan Formula E Team) in third place. Three races into Season 10, Cassidy tops the table with 56 points, followed by Pascal Wehrlein (DEU/TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team/38 points) and Vergne (33 points).
Despite the cooler evening temperatures, the Hankook iON Race supported the drivers in the excellent manner, to which they have become accustomed. “The asphalt on the track in Diriyah is very slippery, plus you have the sand that is constantly blown onto the circuit by the wind. However, our Hankook iON Race produced its customary fine performance and provided the drivers with the grip they needed to push at any time,” says Sujin Jang, Chief Engineer of Formula E Tire Development.
However, the 22 drivers were not the only ones who put on a great show in the two races at the Diriyah E-Prix. An entertaining fringe programme in the Formula E Fan Village, including the Hankook experience stand, gave the visitors a whole host of interactive moments. Another highlight was the drone show in the run-up to the race. The band OneRepublic brought the curtain down on Friday’s action, while the legendary Backstreet Boys provided a fitting climax to the event.
Benjamin Yoon (Hankook Team Manager, Motorsports & Marketing): “The two night races in Saudi Arabia are an absolute highlight on the Formula E calendar. As well as the drivers and teams, the Hankook iON Race was also at its very best again. However, the thrilling action on the track is not the only thing that makes this such an extraordinary motorsport event, but also the magnificent spectacle, with a huge drone show and concerts, including the Backstreet Boys and OneRepublic. We are very lucky, as official technical partner and tyre supplier, to be part of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship.”