MotoE Testing To Resume At Valencia In June

After the disastrous fire which destroyed the Energica Ego Corsa motorcycles and all of the charging equipment for the series at Jerez back in March, the MotoE class is on track to resume preparations for its inaugural season in 2019. Today, Dorna confirmed that testing will resume at Valencia in mid June.

The MotoE riders will assemble at the Circuito Ricardo Tormo in Cheste, near Valencia, on 17th June, the day after the MotoGP race in Barcelona, for three days of testing ahead of the first race of the season at the Sachsenring three weeks later. Testing will pick up where they left off at Jerez, with bikes and riders working on set up and further understanding the intricacies of racing an electric motorcycle. 

The announcement of a test at Valencia is a boost for the series. After fire destroyed all of the equipment for the series, there was serious concerns that Energica, a relatively small manufacturer, could build sufficient bikes to replace the machines damaged by the fire in time to run a series in 2019. Those fears have been allayed, for now at least.

The MotoE championship will now consist of six races at four rounds, to be held at MotoGP rounds: single races at the Sachsenring and Red Bull Ring in Austria, then two double headers, at Misano and the season finale at Valencia.

The press release announcing the test appears below:

FIM Enel MotoE™ World Cup test confirmed for Valencia in June

Full commitment from everyone on board sees MotoE™ ready to get back on track soon

After a fire that sadly destroyed much of the material for the FIM Enel MotoE™ World Cup, the race was on to get the inaugural season back on track as soon as possible and incredibly, with the support of suppliers, Energica are expecting to have built all the machinery for the season in less than three months. Thanks to an incredible push from all those involved, MotoE™ is ready to race.

Previously, a rescheduled calendar was announced and now the dates and venue for the preseason test can also be confirmed. The Circuit Ricardo Tormo is the host for the three-day event, which will take place from the 17th to 19th June. The same track at which MotoE™ will now celebrate their season finale with a double header alongside MotoGP™ at Valencia, it’s the perfect place for the grid to continue their preparation for the season ahead.

Primarily, the test will pick up where Jerez left off, with riders and teams focused on gaining experience with the bike and setup. Sessions will start from the grid for everyone to get to grips with race starts and grid procedures.

Subject to weather, the last day - 19th of June - will kick-off with an E-pole simulation as riders test out qualifying with just one single fast lap at a time. The day will finish with a full race simulation, where riders will get a chance to practice overtakes and race strategy, with Energica awarding the winner with their very own motorcycle Energica Eva – the streetfighter model available for sale.

Simulating qualifying and a full race is useful not only for the riders and teams, but also for the organisation of the Cup in order to fine tune procedures ahead of MotoE™’s debut at the Sachsenring in July. For example, there will be a sighting lap ahead of the race but there is no need for a Warm Up lap on this parallel path of electric racing – so the three-day test will ensure everything is ready for lift off in Germany.

  • Test - June 17th - 19th - Circuit Ricardo Tormo, Comunitat Valenciana
  • Race 1 - July 5th -7th - Sachsenring, Germany
  • Race 2 - August 9th -11th - Red Bull Ring - Spielberg, Austria
  • Races 3 & 4 - September 13th -15th - Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli, San Marino and Riviera di Rimini
  • Races 5 & 6 - November 15th -17th - Circuit Ricardo Tormo, Comunitat Valenciana

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I'm burning with anticipation to see this new technology.  There are some great riders and teams involved, competition should be white hot! 

Sorry, couldn't resist some levity.  I was really sad to see what happened, a lot of people put a lot of work in and to see it all go up like that was semi-tragic.  But unlike something like Notre Dame, there was I suppose nothing at all that was not easily replaceable.  The super flammable plastic pit tent can be re-ordered, the 20 or so stock standard production bikes can be re-made, and the whole lot probably made to disappear among insurance claims and creative accountancy.  And that is why only a couple of months later it will all be up and running again.

I'm looking forward to it, but the fact it's a spec series with standard bikes/batteries/motors means it's even more technically dull than Moto2 - which at least has a little creativity involved.  While I don't doubt that racing these things will lead to improvements (such as how to make it such that they don't all burn to the ground), it's a contradiction to have a series based around new and emerging technology using spec machinery.  Spec machinery makes sense for something like the Red Bull Rookies Cup, where the objective is to spot the most talented riders, but what function does it have in Moto-E?

The answer is obviously to make sure they have a watchable product.  I'll supress the engineer in me, satisfy my inner couch potato and watch on with some curiousity.

The spec rules are just to get it off the ground.  If you opened it up then you'd end up with a first year where one manufacturer made a far superior bike and ran away with the series.  As much as I dislike spec racing, this way we can all be excited to see a bunch of racers, from vastly different eras and backgrounds, on the same bikes, competing to win the first trophy.

I think it will be opened up to competition at some point.  Either in a few years, or when it replaces another class.