In Formula One, the teams build their own cars and are (in some cases) backed by major automobile manufacturers. In Formula E, however, every team will be using the same chassis. But some have been garnering backing from automakers. Audi backs the Abt team, Mahindra is owned by the Indian automaker of the same name, and now e.dams has announced title sponsorship by Renault.
The team is jointly owned by veteran racing team owner Jean-Paul Driot and Alain Prost, who raced for three season for the Renault F1 team, won his fourth world championship under Renault power at Williams and continues to serve as a Renault brand ambassador. Of course Renault, for its part, is also a key partner in developing the Spark-Renault SRT_01E racecar that every team will be using for at least the first season.
While announcing the Renault partnership, e.dams has also confirmed its driver line-up for this season to include Sébastien Buemi and Nicolas Prost. Buemi used to drive in F1 for Scuderia Toro Rosso and served as test driver for Red Bull Racing, and has been driving this year for Toyota in the FIA World Endurance Champship. Nicolas Prost, meanwhile, is Alain's son and an accomplished driver in his own right, winning the Petit Le Mans and the Andros Trophy for ice racing.
The announcement follows the confirmation Katherine Legge as the Amlin Aguri team's driver, and multidisciplinary racing driver Stéphane Sarrazin and former F1 driver Nick Heidfeld to drive for the Venturi team.
- A year ago, Renault confirmed its commitment as technical partner to the new Formula E championship for electric single-seater racing cars.
- Today, Renault has extended its involvement with the announcement that it will be the title sponsor of the e.dams-Renault team which is jointly owned by Renault brand ambassador Alain Prost and Jean-Paul Driot.
- This partnership sees Renault step up its investment in this all-new, particularly innovative discipline.
- The challenge also underlines Renault's determination to take maximum advantage of its motorsport and electric vehicle expertise.
- E.dams-Renault has announced that its drivers for the 2014/2015 championship will be Nicolas Prost and Sébastien Buemi.
Renault, a pioneer in the world of electric vehicles and an active participant in motorsport ever since the brand was founded, was named last year as an official technical partner of the FIA Formula E Championship. With the championship's inaugural race in Beijing in September, looming fast, the French carmaker has announced that is to step up its involvement in the new series in the form of backing for e.dams.
Renault will be the Title Sponsor of the team which is co-owned by Jean-Paul Driot and four-time Formula 1 world champion Alain Prost, who is also an ambassador for the Renault brand. This involvement with the French team will allow Renault to maximise the coverage of its participation in the new championship which promises to be particularly attractive. It's the start of a whole new discipline and motorsport fans will be treated to great show with a new format that will take the action into the heart of several major cities.
The brand's name will appear on the cars, as well as on the drivers' race suits and helmets. A pro-active communication programme is also planned for the championship's inaugural season.
Patrice Ratti, President of Renault Sport Technologies, underlines that "This partnership with e.dams-Renault will allow Renaultsport to have an even closer involvement with the Formula E Championship. The series will be unique and takes motorsport into a new age. Renault is proud to be playing a part in the adventure which stands out as a new challenge. We know Alain and Jean-Paul very well and their experience and record make them high-quality partners. Our involvement with e.dams-Renault will play a core role in our participation and in our Formula E development work.
"We are also very pleased with the work achieved in association with Spark on the Spark-Renault car which all the teams will use during the first year of the series, and we will obviously continue to help Spark to provide the best possible technical service to all the participating teams."
Alain Prost, co-owner of e.dams-Renault and ambassador for the Renault brand, adds: "Jean-Paul Driot and I are delighted to be associated with Renault in this new adventure. The choice of Renault as a major partner was a perfectly natural step because of the exceptional record it has carved out in motorsport, as well as its unique expertise in the field of electric vehicles. Personally, I am thrilled by the idea of working with Renault on such an ambitious project again and by the prospect of writing a new chapter of our association.
"I am confident that our venture will be successful. We are actively preparing for the first races of the season. This week's test at Donington is the next step in that process and it will be followed by a busy summer in order to be ready and competitive for the first grand prix in Beijing, on 13th September.
"It's an enormous challenge because this championship is completely new, both in terms of the technology it features and also the race formats. These are very exciting times."
Jean-Paul Driot, CEO of Dams and co-owner of e.dams-Renault: "Renault is naturally the ideal partner for our involvement in this brand new competition and we will be able to pool our respective expertise. Dams has carved out an exceptional record since it was formed 26 ago and it will now be able to benefit from the input of a partner that has proved itself in the worlds of both motorsport and electric vehicles. Our association will permit us to optimise the development of our racing cars. It is worth recalling that Dams is active in the World Series By Renault and the creation of e.dams-Renault opens up a new chapter of our history. We have recruited two very talented drivers for this exciting new challenge. In addition to his driving skills, Nicolas Prost will bring his ability to think outside of the box to the table, as well as his technical background and his ability to analyse the technical aspects of this all-electric formula. Sébastien Buemi will bring his reputation and speed, along with the fact that he is extremely popular with the public and motor racing fans."
The e.dams-Renault team has announced that its drivers will be Nicolas Prost and Sébastien Buemi, two well-known names from the worlds of Formula 1 and endurance racing. They will have the privilege of driving the new 100% electric cars that will race in the centre of some of the planet's finest cities, starting on 13th September.
Nicolas Prost was born on August 18, 1981, in Saint-Chamond, France, and made his racing debut in the 2003 Formula Campus championship. He moved up to Formula Renault 2.0 and 3.5 before trying his hand in Spanish Formula 3 and the Euroseries 3000. Since 2009, he has shared his time between endurance racing (Le Mans Series, Le Mans 24 Hours) and the Trophée Andros ice-racing series. In 2013, he was named test driver for Lotus F1 Team.
2013: FIA World Endurance Championship (1st, Petit Le Mans, ALMS)
2013: Development driver for Lotus F1 Team
2012: FIA World Endurance Championship (1st, Petit Le Mans / 1st in the Teams championship)
2011: 1st, Trophée Andros / 3rd, Le Mans Series / 6th, Le Mans 24 Hours
2010: 1st, Trophée Andros, P1 / 5th, Le Mans Series / FIA GT1 World Championship
2009: 5th, A1 Grand Prix (Teams) / 5th, Le Mans Series / 12th, Le Mans 24 Hours
2008: 1st, Euroseries 3000
2007: 3rd, Spanish Formula 3 / 5th, Le Mans 24 Hours
2006: 4th, Spanish Formula 3
2005: 10th, French Formula Renault 2.0 Championship
Sébastien Olivier Buemi was born in Aigle, in Switzerland's Vaud region, on October 31, 1988. He made his Formula 1 debut in 2009 with Toro Rosso. The two points he collected in the 2009 Australian Grand Prix made him the fourth-youngest driver to score points in the Formula 1 World Championship.
2013/2014: FIA World Endurance Championship with Toyota Racing
2012: Formula 1 with Red Bull Racing (third driver)
2009/2011: Formula 1 with Toro Rosso
2008: 2nd, Asian GP2 Series
6th, GP2 Series
Formula 1 test driver for Red Bull Racing.
2006/2007: 12th, then 2nd, Formula 3 Euro Series
2004/2005: BMW ADAC Championship
2002: 1st, Swiss Junior Championship
2001: 2nd, Swiss Junior Championship / 1st, Bridgestone Cup Junior
2000: 1st, Swiss Super Mini Championship, KIA Cup class Junior (four wins from four rounds)
1998/1999: 1st, Swiss Mini Championship
1997: Swiss Karting Championships (four races)
DAMS IN BRIEF
DAMS was founded in 1988 by Jean-Paul Driot. The team is based in Ruaudin, France, close to the Circuit de La Sarthe, home of the Le Mans 24 Hours. DAMS grooms young drivers for careers in Formula 1 and, to date, 27 of them have gone on to compete in motorsport's premier series.
DAMS is involved in Formula 1 feeder single-seater championships such as the GP2 Series and World Series by Renault. Over a period of 25 years, the team has built up sound experience and an outstanding record, including three F3000 titles, a Formula Renault V6 title, two A1GP World Championship titles, two GP2 Series Drivers' crowns with Romain Grosjean and Davide Valsecchi, and Teams' and Divers' titles in Formula Renault 3.5 with Kevin Magnussen. DAMS also has solid experience of endurance racing with eight previous participations in the Le Mans 24 Hours, notably in association with Panoz and Cadillac. DAMS is today acclaimed as one of Europe's most prestigious race teams.
RENAULT IN BRIEF
With a history that dates back to 1898, the international Renault Group sold 2.6 million vehicles in 128 countries in 2013. Today, it employs a total staff of 121,800 and has 37 factories. To meet the important challenges of the future and pursue its strategy of profitable growth, the group is focusing on its international expansion, the complementarity of its three brands (Renault, Dacia and Renault Samsung Motors), electric vehicles and its alliance with Nissan, as well as its associations with AVTOVAZ and Daimler. With a score of 12 Formula 1 world titles to its name over a period of 36 years, Renault views world motorsport's most exacting discipline as a means to promote innovation, its image and brand awareness.
2014/2015 FIA FORMULA E CHAMPIONSHIP CALENDAR
13/12/2014: Punta del Este
10/01/2015: Buenos Aires
14/02/2015: Venue to be confirmed
04/04/2015: Los Angeles