May 2, 2023
Speed, Strategy, Sustainability, Opportunity… these words mark just a few of the first impressions from the Southwire team that recently attended the 2023 SABIC Berlin E-Prix, a race that marked Southwire’s first as the official wire and cable provider for the fastest growing motorsport on the planet.
The ABB FIA Formula E World Championship brings dramatic racing to the heart of some of the world’s most iconic cities, providing an elite motorsport platform for the world’s leading automotive manufacturers to accelerate electric vehicle innovation. It is the only sport certified Net Zero Carbon since its inception.
The German race was a doubleheader, held in Berlin’s Tempelhof Airport Circuit at the historic Tempelhofer Feld. The two races – Round 7 and 8 of the series’ Season 9 – marked the halfway point in this year’s calendar while delivering some of the most intense and spectacular racing to date. During Saturday’s race, the 22 drivers delivered a record-breaking 190 overtakes within 43 laps, taking the total tally over the weekend to 362 overtakes across 83 laps. The weekend also marked the European race debut of the series’ all-new GEN3 car – the fastest, lightest, most powerful and efficient electric race car ever made.
Fittingly, the first day of racing was Earth Day, where the championship further reiterated its commitment to sustainability through initiatives around planting and biodiversity that included racing drivers and team personnel.
“Two of the most exciting moments at this event were seeing the Southwire logo on the trackside for the first time and knowing that we had a cable application being used in a Formula E setting for the first time,” said Stephan Hardt, Southwire’s director of vertical strategy and execution. “And, this is just our first race. There is so much more opportunity and excitement to come for future races, especially our title sponsorship of the Portland race in June.”
During the weekend, Southwire team members were able to tour the venue, see the pit lane and team garages and experience all aspects of the race events – helping the company learn more about Formula E and build connections with other companies who are associated or partnered with the sport.
“Southwire is in so many different markets, from renewables to utility to building wire and more. We really are in the center of the electrical industry,” said Yuhsin Hawig, Southwire’s vice president of applications engineering. “With our relationship with Formula E, we are connecting to other businesses with a sustainability mindset and also learning from them.
The Berlin race also marked the first time a Southwire cable was specified and used for a Formula E application.
“We work with a company called VoltServer that has invented a new kind of power transmission called digital electricity, which we’ve used in other applications like telecom and intelligent buildings,” said Charles Hume, Southwire’s director of emerging technologies. “When we began the relationship with Formula E, VoltServer came to us and asked for a specialized cable to use in the Formula E setting. I’ve been into electric vehicles for a long time, so to see our technology being deployed here is a really great feeling.”
As Southwire’s title-sponsored race in Portland approaches on June 24, the excitement around the opportunities for advancement in emerging technologies connected to the sport is evident. The Southwire team is emerging from this experience with more knowledge, ideas and expectations for how the company can play a major role in the electrification of the future when it comes to the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship and beyond.
“As the world advances around electrification, we offer solutions today that can be used in this application, but there is also so much opportunity to innovate for the applications that are coming in the future,” said Bo Quick, Southwire’s vice president of Sustainability. “By connecting and learning alongside the other companies associated with Formula E, we can all innovate together.”
For more information on Southwire’s partnership with Formula E and the upcoming 2023 Southwire Portland E-Prix, visit the Southwire Newsroom.