BMW i Andretti Motorsport have started their 2018-19 ABB FIA Formula E Championship preparations in the best possible vein, with both drivers of their drivers, Alexander Sims and Antonio Felix da Costa topping the time sheets on the opening two days of pre-season testing at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Valencia.
It marks a complete turnaround for the team after Andretti finished bottom of the teams championship last season, and is just what the team wanted ahead of what they hope will be a very strong campaign.
Sims topped the times on the opening day of pre-season testing, smashing the previous lap record with a 1 min 17.553 before da Costa went even faster on day two, topping the tables with a 1 min 16.977 to set the new unofficial lap record. And not only is their car quick, but it has proven to be reliable as well with the duo completing a total of 312 laps over the course of the two days.
Antonio Felix da Costa said: ““We’ve had two good days of testing so far, on which the BMW iFE.18 made a very good impression in terms of both pace and reliability. It is just so much fun driving this car. The powertrain works perfectly. As a team, we are absolutely moving in the right direction. On Friday, we will once again be focussed on starting the season well prepared.”
His team-mate Alexander Sims said: “Overall, testing has gone very well for us so far. Our car is fantastic – and it felt great when I recorded the best times in both sessions on Tuesday. We will have to wait and see how much of an indicator the results of testing here will turn out to be. Nevertheless, it is great to be quick off the blocks. Compared with last year’s car, the BMW iFE.18 feels very advanced. We have more power and the new ‘Brake-by-Wire’ system in particular gives you so much more confidence in the cockpit.”
Pre-season testing will continue on Friday at Circuit Ricardo Tormo, which will be the last day the teams will have for any on-track preparations before the new season of Formula E kicks off on 15 December for the 2018 Riyadh ePrix.