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Successful Shakedown for Mahindra Formula E Team

5th June 2014

Photograph of Successful Shakedown for Mahindra Formula E Team

The Mahindra Formula E team completed a successful shakedown of the team's new Formula E car on Wednesday, at a wet Donington Park circuit in the UK. Taking part in the first ever shakedown for the 10 Formula E teams, Mahindra Racing drivers Bruno Senna and Karun Chandhok completed various system checks during the day's running.

Both drivers completed their seat fits on Tuesday, with the Mahindra Racing mechanics making the seats and adjusting pedal positions to suit both drivers. With only one car yet delivered to each of the teams, Senna and Chandhok shared the team's car - named via a fan competition as Mahindra Nitro - throughout the day.

Senna was first to take to the track, pulling out onto a wet Donington circuit in the fully liveried Mahindra Nitro. After a few technical issues, the car was able to complete a number of laps, allowing the team to check the battery and recharging systems. Chandhok drove the afternoon session, completing two separate runs to add to the team's knowledge of the fully electric machine.

Reflecting on his first experience of the car, Senna said, "It was a fun morning. We managed to check most of the systems which was the objective. It is a completely different thing when you drive this car, because you don't have as many references helping you when you drive such as engine noise. Sometimes you find yourself hitting the rev limiter as there are no audio signs that you need to change gear. It's just one of those things we're really going to have to pay attention to as drivers and it takes only a few laps to understand it. As soon as you get into a groove it's like any other car. We just need to learn a lot and put together a really good test programme for the start of July."

"It was an interesting day" added team mate Chandhok. “Driving a new car is always exciting but driving something so different made it really intriguing. It was very much a systems check and day gathering information on the motor and battery but also a chance for us as drivers to get a first impression. It's clear this is going to be a category that is about strategy and intelligence rather than just pure driving speed. With the energy recovery systems and battery life you will have to think about strategy all the time. I think the fans are going to be impressed when they see all the cars on track.”

Team Principal Dilbagh Gill added, “This was an important day for us. Not only was it the first opportunity for Karun and Bruno to work trackside with the team, it was also our first opportunity to work with and begin to understand the revolutionary technology on the Formula E cars. Despite a few teething problems, we were able to shakedown the car and check very thoroughly all the complex systems on it. Formula E have provided a great technical support team and it was fantastic to see our team and drivers adjust to this new technology so quickly.”

Chandhok and Senna will be back on track for the first full Formula E test from 3 – 4 July, also at the Donington Circuit in the UK.

Mahindra Racing

Mahindra Racing is one of only ten teams – and the only Indian team – to compete in the inaugural FIA Formula E Championship. It was also the first Indian team to participate in the FIM MotoGP™ World Motorcycle Racing Championship series in 2011 and the Italian National Motorcycle Racing Championship (CIV) in 2012.

The newly developed Formula E series is the world's first fully electric racing championship. Commencing in September 2014 through to June 2015, it will be held in 10 of the world's leading cities, including London, Beijing and Los Angeles. In the inaugural season, 10 teams, consisting of two drivers each, will go head-to-head, creating a unique and exciting spectacle that is designed to appeal to a new generation of motorsport fans.

This revolutionary racing series will also serve as a framework for R&D around electric vehicles, accelerating general interest in these cars and promoting sustainability.

Mahindra Racing's Formula E team which is based at Donington Park in the UK is currently preparing to compete in the series. All teams will run the zero emissions SRT-01E racing car, with its batteries producing 200kw, the equivalent of 270bhp.

Mahindra's bold decision to take on the world's best at the highest level of motorcycle racing has won the team a number of prestigious awards in India, including: the NDTV Car and Bike Awards - 'Mobil 1 Motorsport Award of the Year', 2012 and 2013; the Bike India Magazine - 'Motorsport Award', 2013; and 'ZigWheels Motorsport Award of the Year', 2012.

The team now hopes to build further on its success at the inaugural FIA Formula-E Racing World Championship in 2014.

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Bruno Senna and Karun Chandhok with Mahindra Nitro

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