Formula E’s pre-season testing got fully underway earlier this month at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Valencia, Spain.
Monegasque outfit Rokit Venturi Racing arrived at pre-season testing without having any on-track activity for 108 days, a new driver lineup in Edoardo Mortara and Norman Nato and a new Deputy Team Principal in the form of recently-retired driver Jérôme d’Ambrosio.
With some big changes in the team and the additional challenges posed by running pre-season tests under the ever-present spectre of COVID-19, Venturi left that weekend’s testing feeling that things were looking promising.
Rokit Venturi Racing managed to cram in 513 laps over 18 hours of combined track time during the testing weekend, covering a total distance of over 1,600 kilometers on the 3.138 kilometer long circuit. Norman Nato managed a highest position of seventh place on the first day of testing, whilst Edoardo Mortara managed a highest position of eighth place on the second day.
At the end of the weekend Nato finished testing eleventh overall with a lap time of 1:12.002 on day 3, whilst Mortara finished thirteenth overall with a time of 1:12.066 on day 3. Mortara’s time on day 3 was only 0.306 seconds shy of the fastest lap of the week, which was set by BMW i Andretti Autosport’s Maximilian Günther. Mortara managed to complete 245 laps over the weekend, whilst Nato completed 268.
“It was great to be back in action in Valencia and I would like to applaud Formula E and the FIA for organising this test in these challenging times,” said Team Principal Suzie Wolff.
“After the difficulties we faced at the end of Season 6, our prime target for pre-season testing was to focus on achieving the reliability and consistency of our new car that will be necessary for us to challenge Season 7. At this early stage, our initial performance looks promising but we need to continue to make gains over the winter to be in a strong position for the start of the season.”
“Our three days in Valencia went by extremely quickly – a lot of hard work but it felt very constructive and we learned a huge amount,” said Edoardo Mortara.
“It was good to get so many laps under our belt, especially with a brand new car. On paper, we know that the car is quick and we are competitive in some areas. If we can continue to extract the performance over the next month and work well as a team, I’m confident that we’ll be able to score some decent points as the season starts”
“It’s been a really positive three days of testing in Valencia,” said Norman Nato. “The mixed conditions we experienced on Day 1 were very helpful because it allowed me to drive the car in wet, damp and dry conditions. We tried a lot of different set-ups on the car over the week and I think our pace showed promise, especially on push laps.
“On the long runs, we collected a lot of data that we now have to analyse before Santiago. I’m getting ready for the first race of the season and I’m very happy with the work we’ve done.
“The team did a great job at the test, with long, hard days and not the nicest weather conditions so I’m grateful for their help and all their efforts making me feel so welcome and as prepared as possible for the season ahead.”