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ABT Sportsline
Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler Logo
Team Information
Based Germany Allgäu, Germany
Début 2014 Beijing ePrix
Founder Johann Abt
Key People Hans-Jürgen Abt
Driver(s) Lucas di Grassi (No.1)
Daniel Abt (No.66)
Car Audi e-tron FE04
Sponsor(s) Unknown
Website Audi Sport ABT
Team Stats
Last Season 2nd (248 pt(s))
Entries 0
Wins 0
First Win 2014 Beijing ePrix
Points 898
Poles 0
Podiums 0
Fastest Laps 0
Titles
Current Season
Entrant Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler
Brazil Lucas di Grassi Germany Daniel Abt
Di Grassi Daniel Abt
2nd (144 Pt(s)) 5th (120 Pt(s))
Team Standings
1st (264 Pt(s))

ABT Sportsline, otherwise officially registered as Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler, are an entrant in the 2017/18 FIA Formula E Championship, fielding defending driver's Champion Lucas di Grassi.[1] Previously named as Audi Sport ABT, the team use cars built by the Schaeffler group, although from 2017/18 German car manufacturer Audi began to increase their involvement with the team.[2]

Historically, ABT Sportsline have finished as runners-up in two of the three previous Formula E Championships, while lead driver di Grassi has challenged for the title in each. This run came to an end in 2017/18, with ABT finally claiming their maiden FE Teams' title, edging out Techeetah on the final day by two points.[3]

BackgroundEdit

Audi Sport ABT are one of a number of teams that have resulted from the association with ABT Sportline and Audi since the late 1990s.[4] The pair have a significant and successful record in motorsport, being multiple DTM champions and Formula Three winners.[1] It is thought that the involvement of the team with Formula E will see Audi become involved in the series after 2015.[4]

Formula E HistoryEdit

Audi Sport ABT were the first German team to be announced as entrants in the championship, with two drivers who have a long association with the team, Lucas di Grassi and Daniel Abt.[1] Their season started brightly, as di Grassi swept home to take victory in the 2014 Beijing ePrix, writing himself and Audi Sport ABT into the history books as the first winners of an ePrix.[5] The team continued to have a strong season, with di Grassi leading the championship until the 2015 Miami ePrix.

Abt's season failed to improve after the halfway mark, with the German struggling to support his team mate's title challenge. Di Grassi looked to have won the 2015 Berlin ePrix, only to be excluded because of a 'repaired' front wing.[6] He ultimately missed out on the title by eleven points, with Audi Sport ABT also dropping to third on the final day, having sat in second, behind e.dams-Renault, for the majority of the season.[7]

Summoning SchaefflerEdit

German technology giants Schaeffler were drafted into Audi Sport ABT when the homologation process for season two cars opened in February 2015.[8] Schaeffler built their own powertrain for the new season, with the team renamed to incorporate the new partnership as Audi took a back step.[9] The team retained di Grassi and Abt from season one, and then demonstrated the new powertrain had incredible pace as the Brazilian flattened the lap record at Donington Park during the 2015 Donington Test. Their inherent pace was demonstrated at the season opening round in Beijing, with di Grassi taking second place to pre-season favourite Buemi.[10]

The team would collect their first win of the season at the 2015 Putrajaya ePrix, with di Grassi sweeping to victory by surviving the intense heat.[11] From that point onwards it would be the Brazilian would be in the title hunt, taking two podiums at the following two rounds, before taking a second victory at the 2016 Mexico City ePrix.[12] That was, until the officials deemed that one of di Grassi's cars was found to be underweight, a fact that saw the Brazilian disqualified, with ABT Schaeffler opting not to appeal.[12]

The disqualification put di Grassi on the back foot, but the Brazilian would take two victories at the 2016 Long Beach ePrix and the 2016 Paris ePrix, the latter particularly satisfying as it came on major rivals Renault e.Dams' home turf.[13] Unfortunately for ABT Schaeffler, the following round saw Buemi and e.Dams respond by taking victory at the 2016 Berlin ePrix, the home race for the German team.[14] That victory also allowed Buemi to get to within a point of di Grassi at the top of the standings, despite second driver Abt's attempts to swap positions with the Brazilian late in the race.[14]

Audi Sport ABT logo

The original logo for Audi Sport ABT, used during 2014/15.

Into the 2015/16 season finale in London and the first race saw Renault almost effectively secure the Teams' Championship, although di Grassi would extend his title lead, having battled up from the mid-pack.[15] Into the season ending race and pole for Buemi left him and di Grassi level on points, with the Brazilian ahead by virtue of an extra third place finish, but he would start the 2016 London ePrix II directly behind his title rival.[16] As it turned out, the Championship looked to have been decided as early as turn three, when di Grassi misjudged the closing speed of Buemi and rammed into the back of him, sending both cars into the run off with heavy damage.[16]

Yet, Buemi and di Grassi would both limp their damaged cars back to the pits to swap to their second cars, with the two suddenly in a duel to set fastest lap.[16] The fight saw di Grassi do his best to prevent Buemi setting a fastest lap by simply blocking his attempts, although the ploy failed when e.Dams managed to get Buemi out behind teammate, and race leader, Nicolas Prost, allowing him to set a time almost half a second quicker than di Grassi.[16] The Brazilian missed out in the finale once again, while teammate Abt ensured that the team would finish third with a place on the podium.[16]

Developing DesiresEdit

ABT Schaeffler opted to retain di Grassi and Abt for the 2016/17 season, with the pair helping the team to prepare the new ABT Schaeffler FE02 ahead of the 2016 Donington Test.[17] The team would be bolsted by news that Audi were looking to increase their involvement, with the German marque rumoured to be interested in taking over the team for the 2017/18 season, rather than simply providing support.[18] As for the test, di Grassi and Abt both ended up in the top ten on overall pace, with the new car also proving to be a reliable runner.

ABT-SolutismEdit

Audi e-tron FE04

Lucas di Grassi's 2017/18 charger run by ABT Sportsline.

ABT Sportsline's partner's Audi would throw their full weight at the FE Championship in 2017/18, with de Grassi and Abt handed four e-tron FE04s for the year.[2] The new "e-tron" proved to be the class of the field, with Abt and di Grassi covering a huge amount of distance at the 2017 Valencia Test.[19] Yet, the car also proved to be unreliable, with Abt only able to secure fifth after a mid-race issue at the season opener, while di Grassi opened his title defence in seventeenth.[20]

Things looked better for the ABT squad at the second Hong Kong E-Prix, for Abt claimed victory as di Grassi finished fifteenth, only for Abt to get disqualified due to an admin error.[21] A couple of miserable races would follow in Marrakech and Santiago, with three retirements and just a single point, for Abt, coming across the two races.[22] Yet, the Abt team finally got their first victory of the season in the fifth race, with Abt finally getting a trouble free run to claim a dominant victory in Mexico City.[23]

After that the ABT squad never looked back, with di Grassi finishing second in each of the next four races, dragging the team further up the field. This run would culminate in di Grassi finishing second to Abt in Berlin, with the German claiming pole, victory and fastest lap in a dominant display by the German squad.[24] di Grassi followed that up with a victory in Zürich, before a second one-two, this time with di Grassi ahead of Abt, followed in the first New York City E-Prix.[25]

ABT therefore headed into the final race of the season with a shot at taking the Teams' Championship, for Techeetah were just five points ahead heading into the final round.[3] Ultimately a jump-start by Techeetah's second driver André Lotterer gifted Audi the title, for while the Chinese squad's Champion driver Jean-Éric Vergne swept to victory, di Grassi and Abt finished second and third.[3] With Lotterer in ninth the final margin between the two teams settled at two points, with ABT becoming the first team to dethrone arch-FE-rivals Renault e.Dams in three years.[3]

Dominance Continued?Edit

ABT would keep their Championship winning formula the same for the 2018/19 season, with di Grassi and Abt partnered for the fifth straight season to debut the new Spark Gen 2.[26]

Formula E RecordEdit

The tables below show ABT Sportsline's full record in the FIA Formula E Championship.

Formula E EntriesEdit

The table below gives an overview of ABT Sportsline's entries in Formula E:

ABT Sportsline's overall Formula E Record
Season Official name No. Drivers DC Pos. DC Pts. Car TC Pos. TC Pts.
2014/15 Germany Audi Sport ABT 11 Brazil Lucas di Grassi 3rd 144 Spark-Renault SRT_01E 3rd 165
66 Germany Daniel Abt 11th 32
2015/16 Germany ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport 11 Brazil Lucas di Grassi 2nd 153 ABT Schaeffler FE01 2nd 221
66 Germany Daniel Abt 7th 68
2016/17 Germany ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport 11 Brazil Lucas di Grassi 1st 181 ABT Schaeffler FE02 2nd 248
66 Germany Daniel Abt 8th 67
2017/18 Germany Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler 1 Brazil Lucas di Grassi 2nd 144 Audi e-tron FE04 1st 264
66 Germany Daniel Abt 5th 120

Career ResultsEdit

Listed below are the full career results of ABT Sportsline:

FIA Formula E Championship Record
Year Driver Rounds Pos. Pts.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
2014/15 Flag of China Flag of Malaysia Flag of Uruguay Flag of Argentina Flag of the United States Flag of the United States Flag of Monaco Flag of Germany Flag of Russia Flag of the United Kingdom Flag of the United Kingdom 3rd 165
di Grassi 1st 2nd 3rd Ret 9th 3rd 2nd DSQ 2nd 4th 6th
Abt 10th 10th 15th 13th 3rd 15th Ret 14th 5th Ret 11th
2015/16 Flag of China Flag of Malaysia Flag of Uruguay Flag of Argentina Flag of Mexico Flag of the United States Flag of France Flag of Germany Flag of Russia Flag of the United Kingdom Flag of the United Kingdom 2nd 221
di Grassi 2nd 1st 2nd 3rd DSQ 1st 1st 3rd CAN 4th Ret
Abt 11th 7th 8th 13th 7th 3rd 10th 2nd CAN Ret 2nd
2016/17 Flag of Hong Kong Flag of Morocco Flag of Argentina Flag of Mexico Flag of Monaco Flag of France Flag of Germany Flag of Germany Flag of the United States Flag of the United States Flag of Canada Flag of Canada 2nd 248
di Grassi 2nd 5th 3rd 1st 2nd Ret 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 1st 7th
Abt Ret 6th 7th 7th 7th 13th 6th 4th 14th Ret 4th 6th
2017/18 Flag of Hong Kong Flag of Hong Kong Flag of Morocco Flag of Chile Flag of Mexico Flag of Uruguay Flag of Italy Flag of France Flag of Germany Flag of Switzerland Flag of the United States Flag of the United States 1st 264
di Grassi 17th 14th Ret Ret 9th 2nd 2nd 2nd 2nd 1st 1st 2nd
Abt 5th DSQ 10th Ret 1st 14th 4th 7th 1st 13th 2nd 3rd

ReferencesEdit

Videos and Images:

References:
  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 'Teams: Audi Sport ABT', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 2015), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/teams/audi-sport-abt.aspx, (Accessed 16/07/2015)
  2. 2.0 2.1 'Audi unveils e-tron FE04', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 27/09/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/september/audi-unveils-e-tron-fe04/, (Accessed 27/09/2017)
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 'Champion Vergne victorious as Audi scoops the teams' title in New York finale', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 15/07/2018), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2018/july/champion-vergne-victorious-as-audi-scoops-the-teams-title-in-new-york-finale/, (Accessed 16/07/2018)
  4. 4.0 4.1 'ABT Sportsline', wikipedia.org, (WikiMedia, 07/07/2015), http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abt_Sportsline, (Accessed 16/07/2015)
  5. 'Lucas di Grassi snatches win after dramatic last corner crash', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 13/09/2014), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2014/september/lucas-di-grassi-snatches-win-after-dramatic-last-corner-crash.aspx, (Accessed 30/04/2015)
  6. 'Di Grassi excluded from DHL Berlin ePrix', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 23/05/2015), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2015/may/di-grassi-excluded-from-dhl-berlin-eprix.aspx, (Accessed 23/05/2015)
  7. 'Bird hails ‘unbelievable’ end to season', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 28/06/2015), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2015/june/bird-hails-unbelievable-end-to-season.aspx, (Accessed 28/06/2015)
  8. 'Eight manufacturers to enter Formula E next season', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 23/02/2015), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2015/february/eight-manufacturers-to-enter-fia-formula-e-from-second-season.aspx, (Accessed 30/04/2015)
  9. 'FIA announces 10 teams to register for season two', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 02/07/2015), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2015/july/fia-announces-10-teams-to-register-for-season-two.aspx, (Accessed 02/07/2015)
  10. 'Buemi to the max in Beijing', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 24/10/2015),http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2015/october/buemi-wins-swusp-beijing-eprix.aspx, (Accessed 25/10/2015)
  11. 'Di Grassi keeps his cool to win in Putrajaya', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 07/11/2015), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2015/november/di-grassi-keeps-his-cool-to-win-in-putrajaya.aspx, (Accessed 22/11/2015)
  12. 12.0 12.1 'Di Grassi stripped of Mexico win', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 12/03/2016), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2016/march/di-grassi-stripped-of-mexico-win.aspx, (Accessed 13/03/2016)
  13. 'Di Grassi triumphant in Paris', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 23/04/2016), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2016/april/di-grassi-wins-visa-paris-eprix/, (Accessed 23/04/2016)
  14. 14.0 14.1 'Buemi win cuts di Grassi's lead to just one point', fiaformula.com, (FIA Formula E, 21/05/2016), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2016/may/buemi-win-cuts-di-grassi-s-lead-to-just-one-point/, (Accessed 21/05/2016)
  15. 'BUEMI AND DI GRASSI CHARGE UP THE ORDER, BUT IT’S PROST WHO LEADS THE WAY', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 02/07/2016), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2016/july/prost-wins-in-style-as-di-grassi-inches-closer-to-title/, (Accessed 03/07/2016)
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 16.3 16.4 'BUEMI WINS TITLE AFTER SPECTACULAR FINALE: VISA FASTEST LAP ENDS UP DECIDING THE 2015/16 FIA FORMULA E CHAMPIONSHIP', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 03/07/2016), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2016/july/buemi-wins-title-after-spectacular-finale/, (Accessed 04/07/2016)
  17. 'TEN TEAMS ENTERED FOR THE 2016-17 FIA FORMULA E CHAMPIONSHIP', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 01/07/2016), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2016/july/ten-teams-entered-for-the-2016-17-fia-formula-e-championship/, (Accessed 08/07/2016)
  18. 'AUDI TO INTENSIFY FORMULA E PROGRAMME: AUDI WORKING TOWARDS FULLY-FLEDGED FACTORY COMMITMENT FOR 2017/18 SEASON WITH ABT SCHAEFFLER', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 02/09/2016), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2016/september/audi-to-intensify-formula-e-programme/, (Accessed 12/09/2016)
  19. 'Turvey finishes pre-season testing on top', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 05/10/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/october/turvey-finishes-pre-season-testing-on-top/, (Accessed 05/10/2017)
  20. 'Bird clinches victory in Hong Kong', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 02/12/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/december/bird-clinches-victory-in-hong-kong/, (Accessed 16/12/2017)
  21. Scott Mitchell, 'Abt stripped of maiden Formula E win', motorsport.com, (Motorsport Network, 03/12/2017), https://www.motorsport.com/formula-e/news/abt-stripped-maiden-fe-win-hong-kong-985435/, (Accessed 03/12/2017)
  22. 'Vergne steals the show in epic Santiago E-Prix', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 03/02/2018), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2018/february/vergne-steals-the-show-in-epic-santiago-e-prix/, (Accessed 03/02/2018)
  23. 'Abt finally clinches first victory in Mexico City', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 03/03/2018), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2018/march/abt-finally-clinches-first-victory-in-mexico-city/, (Accessed 04/03/2018)
  24. 'Abt leads Audi one-two win at home race in Berlin', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 19/05/2018), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2018/may/abt-leads-audi-one-two-win-at-home-race-in-berlin/, (Accessed 19/05/2018)
  25. 'Di Grassi victorious as Vergne clinches championship crown', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 14/07/2018), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2018/july/di-grassi-victorious-as-vergne-clinches-championship-crown/, (Accessed 15/07/2018)
  26. 'Daniel Abt confirmes drive with Audi in Season 5', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 09/06/2018), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2018/june/daniel-abt-confirmes-drive-with-audi-in-season-5/, (Accessed 09/06/2018)