Dubbed the ‘Formula E of the sea’, all-electric powerboat racing series E1 is hoping to add one of the most iconic racing cities to its inaugural season.
During the unveiling of a model of its Racebird electrically-powered hydrofoil at the Yacht Club de Monaco, the new series announced its ambitions to race around the principality’s harbor. The event would mark a change in pace for the historic harbor, which is usually home to a few billion dollars worth of superyacht when Formula 1 and Formula E come to town.
The series said it was “in discussions with the relevant authorities in Monaco” as it finalizes the course layout ahead of its debut season in 2023. The circuit could take in sections inside Port Hercule and outside the harbor walls along the Mediterranean shoreline.
The E1 series is also in talks with other host cities around the world, and is set to launch feasibility studies in European cities such as Rotterdam, in The Netherlands, and various locations in Hungary.
In Rotterdam, E1 is working with the city’s port authority to incorporate the race into the World Port Days festival, an annual maritime festival in the city.
In Hungary, the series is even considering a race on the Danube River including a section in front of the Hungarian Parliament Building.
Racing is slated to begin in 2023 and each team will be equipped with a Racebird hydrofoil craft, which should reach speeds of up to 50 knots (58mph) and be powered by a 35kWh battery pack.
E1 unveiled the first full-size model of the electric Racebird powerboat at the Yacht Club de Monaco yesterday. During the event, Agag and Basso were joined by Sophi Horne, designer of the Racebird; Brunello Acampora, founder and CEO of Victory Marine; and Raffaele Chiulli, president of Union Internationale Motonautique – the international governing body for powerboating.
There is still work to be done on the craft ahead of its first sea trials. In the coming months, E1 says engineers will focus on the integration of the battery and controls systems, and how they work together with the powertrain.