Motorsport comes to Hong Kong!
The next couple of months are packed with events here in Hong Kong, but one that we’re most excited for is the upcoming Formula E on Saturday, 8 October and Sunday, 9 October, 2016 (check out the race weekend schedule here!). Fast cars and their superstars will be taking over the Central Harbourfront for two days of exhilarating races plus plenty of awesome parties and celebrations. If (like a few of us here at Sassy HQ!) you’ve not got a clue when it comes to the Formula E never fear, we’ve got the lowdown with a basic guide to the races and all the details on the best deals and extra fun around town.
What is the Formula E?
The FIA Formula E Championship is the world’s first fully electric racing series, where speed kings and queens gather for the most (literally) electrifying event of the year. Conceived in 2012, the first official season kicked off in Beijing 2014, and now we’re charging up for a third season. 20 drivers from 10 teams will start on the grid and will contain 14 rounds at 12 venues; you may even see some familiar Formula One faces such as Jean-Éric Vergne, Nick Heidfeld, 2014-15 FIA Formula E Champion Nelson Piquet Jr. and reigning FIA Formula E Champion, Sebastien Buemi. The chequered flag will be making its final wave on 30 July, 2017 in New York.
The championship’s core values are reflected in the three “E”s of Formula E; Energy, Environment, Entertainment. The series is working towards a cleaner future and inspiring a new generation of motorsport. As first time hosts, Hong Kong introduces its thrilling fast paced street track, which stretches approximately 2km in length and features 10 turns. Both speed and precision is required through the two tight hairpin turns at Lung Wo Road and the Star Ferry pier, and down a whopping 555-metre main straight. The overtaking opportunities are vast, and fans cheering from the grandstands will be in for a truly adrenaline filled weekend… snap up tickets here.
Things to know:
There are two practice sessions, which take place before any event, the first being 45 minutes, and a second 30-minute session. Drivers have access to two cars with 200kW available throughout.
The qualifying session lasts one hour and is a fight to set the fastest lap time in order to determine the starting grid for the race. Drivers are divided into groups, which each get six minutes to set their best lap. Drivers only able to use one car are allowed to use their full power of 200kW. New for this season, the five fastest drivers then move forward into a one-by-one Super Pole shoot-out in order to secure the Julius Baer pole position. Starting from slowest to fastest, the top five take turns leaving the pit lane and start their flying lap. The driver who sets the fastest time and achieves the Julius Baer pole position will be awarded three points.
The race lasts for approximately 50 minutes, after beginning with a standing start (as opposed to other motorsport series’ in which a formation lap is taken) and each driver must have a mandatory car change.
The maximum power in race mode is restricted to 170kW, with exception of the three drivers that received the highest FanBoost votes… yes, you can actually get involved in the race yourself using social media to give your fave driver a power boost in the race! These lucky picks will receive an extra 100kW of energy to be used in a power window between 180kW and 200kW, so your votes on social media will genuinely be making a difference to the outcome of the race. Pretty cool when you think about it… so get voting now!
The driver earning the fastest lap will be rewarded 1 point towards their drivers’ championship standing, as well as their teams’ championship. The top 10 drivers at the end of the race receive points using the standard FIA system of:
1st – 25pts
2nd – 18pts
3rd – 15pts
4th – 12pts
5th – 10pts
6th – 8pts
7th – 6pts
8th – 4pts
9th – 2pts
10th – 1pt
Be sure to make some noise for the top three as they take their places on the podium celebrating with showers of champagne and prestigious trophies!
Now you’ve paid attention to the details of the race, it’s time to focus on all the extra add ons that come with the Formula E! If you’re not up in the grandstands waving flags and cheering as your favourite drivers, head to the Central Harbourfront. It’s been transformed into the eVillage, where fans can enjoy the excitement of the weekend, watching the action live on big screens or even have the chance to meet the racers in person! The eVillage contains a multitude of activities, with interactive booths showcasing the latest E technology, EV cars and interactive gaming, as well as plenty of dining options, music and entertainment.
In the run up to and during the races there will be parties and special promotions all over town, so here are our pick of the some of the most exciting events:
DJ Nicky Romero, Nelly and Ne-Yo are just a few of the massive names to be performing at Asia’s definitive dance festival, this year appearing trackside! Prepare for a weekend of electric excitement by dancing the night away with your favourite artists.
When: Friday, 7 October, 5.30pm
Where: EMOTION Club, HKT Hong Kong ePrix, Central Harbourfront
How much: $1,380 per person (early bird), $1,780 per person (regular). Tickets available here.
“Battle of Victors” Fight Night
Keep your sporting calendars full into the evenings by watching young boxing professionals, including local superstar Rex “The Wonder Kid” Tso, competing for the WBO International Junior Bantamweight title.
When: Saturday, 8 October, 7pm
Where: Hall 5B, Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, Wan Chai
How much: Tickets from: $380, $580, $880, $1,280 and $1,880, available here.
If you can’t make the Formula E, or if you want continue the celebration into the city, be sure to hit up one of these fab race-themed brunches! Every weekend leading up to the race will see some of the best restaurants, bars and hotels in town celebrating with extra special cocktails and champagne offers from G.H.Mumm, live music, interactive race-themed entertainment and photo opps… there’s even the chance to win a pair of 2016 FIA Formula E HKT Hong Kong ePrix Grand Stand tickets:
- Head to Conrad Hong Kong for the ‘Formula E After Brunch Oasis Hours’ for a BBQ platter, glass of Mumm champers, a sabrage demo and live music ($289 per person + $150 for two hours free-flow).
- Don’t miss out on the a special Saturday and Sunday session on 24 and 25 September at Zuma where their sushi and sashimi brunch will offer free-flow Mumm champagne for $150 per person and extra entertainment.
- One of our fave bars, The Envoy, will feature a ‘Formula E on the Terrace’ party every Saturday from 5pm with a Mumm tasting booth, Formula E photo booth and champagne cocktails.
Support the environmental ambitions of Formula E by dining in the company of Community Chest representatives, Formula E racers and officials, as well as global and local sponsors. This dinner experience doesn’t come cheap as tables of 12 are being sold at $100,000 each. However, it’s a once in a lifetime experience if you’re a big fan and can get a group together or are looking for a company night out.
When: Friday, 7 October
Where: Government House, Upper Albert Road, Central
How much: $100,000 for a table of 12 people. Email email@example.com for bookings.
What are you waiting for? Get ready for one of HK’s most exciting weekends and snap up tickets here…
With special thanks to our very own motorsport fan Kate Allen!