Felipe Massa, who has signed a multi-year deal to race for the Venturi Formula E team, has carried out his first test for his new employers.
The former Ferrari, Sauber & Williams F1 driver has come out of retirement to join the Formula E paddock; having signed a multi-year agreement to race for the Monaco-based Venturi team when the 2018/2019 season begins in Riyadh later this year.
This will also be the first race for the new ‘Gen2’ car, the more aggressive, faster, and more powerful Formula E chassis which will also eliminate the need for mid-race pitstops to change cars due to short battery life. The ‘Gen2’ was given its first track action at the most recent round of the championship, the Berlin ePrix at Tempelhof Airport; Nico Rosberg giving his home fans a thrill as he tried out Formula E machinery for the first time.
With Massa’s return to racing less than six months away, he has begun testing for his new team. They headed off to the Ales-Cevennes circuit in the south of France, and completed over 700 kilometres of track time. It’s yet to be announced who will join Massa in the second cockpit, with current Venturi drivers Maro Engel & Edoardo Mortara looking likely to join the new HWA squad who enter next season.
One possibility is Arthur Leclerc, younger brother of current Sauber F1 star Charles. Arthur is part of Venturi’s fledgling young driver program, and is currently racing in Formula 4.