Rob Smedley sets up electric go-karting series

Renowned Formula 1 engineer Rob Smedley has set up a new electric go-karting series called ‘Electroheads’, kicking off in 2020.

Rob Smedley has been absent from Formula 1 since the end of 2018, having departed Williams after just over five years with the Grove-based team. Smedley had switched to Williams from Ferrari at the same time as Felipe Massa, having worked as the Brazilian driver’s race engineer at the Scuderia for seven years. He also briefly worked at Jordan at the start of his F1 career in the early 2000s.

However, Smedley revealed what he has been up to during his absence from Formula 1 over the past weekend by appearing at the Autosport International Show in Birmingham in the UK. He was there to reveal a new powertrain and e-kart series which has been named ‘Electroheads’.

Electroheads Motorsport has been set up as a UK-based engineering company which aims to ‘democratise’ motorsport by making it far more accessible and affordable for young people to get into motorsport, with the go-karting series announced as the first initiative.

The karting series will begin in 2020, with racing in the Bambino and Cadet categories in the UK.

Smedley explained the decision to set up Electroheads as he sees the end of the ‘petrolhead’ is looming, and that entry to grassroots racing needs to be easier for normal people to embrace:

“As Lewis Hamilton himself said recently: racing has become too expensive and is not diverse enough. I totally agree. Through electrification we can change that. We will be the driving force to inspire, energise and thrill racers as they climb the ladder. It is cleaner, cheaper, faster and importantly, fairer.”

“At Electroheads we know that electrification can be the vehicle for democratising motorsport and it starts at the grassroots and it starts today.”

“For the next generation of racers, the era of the petrolhead is coming to a close. The whole philosophy of the Electroheads group is to get digital natives to experience the unique awe of the electric revolution. Electroheads Motorsport is a critical part of that ambition.”

The aim is to make it easier for young, eager racers and their families to get involved in racing, with entrants taking part in equal karts that have all been prepared by Smedley himself, as well as a team of performance engineer.

The karts will use technology to ensure every racer has the exact same power output and this information will be available to all taking part, so that everyone racing will see the drivetrain performance equality.

“Electrification allows for complete parity, where the principal performance differentiator is driver talent. Democratic. Meritocratic. Electric. That’s why we’re here.”  concluded Smedley.

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Thomas Maher

Co-owner, Chief Editor and a journalist for - Ireland's only accredited F1 & Formula E website. Enjoy my work -

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