Lucas di Grassi and Daniel Abt become first Formula E drivers
|By Sam Tremayne||Thursday, February 13th 2014, 10:00 GMT|
Lucas di Grassi and Daniel Abt have become the first two drivers to be confirmed for the inaugural season of the all-electric Formula E championship.
The pair will drive for Abt Sportsline squad, the first of the series' 10 teams to reveal its driver line-up.
Di Grassi served as Formula E's official development driver, but relinquished that role in order to chase a race seat.
The 29-year-old Brazilian will also be competing full-time for Audi in the World Endurance Championship in 2014, having been promoted to take Allan McNish's vacated seat alongside 2013 champions Tom Kristensen and Loic Duval.
"I'm delighted that Audi is giving me the opportunity to drive in sports car racing as well as in Formula E," di Grassi said.
"I've been watching Abt Sportsline on track for a long time - a very professional and cool outfit and my first contact.
"It's great that it worked out. We've got ambitious plans."
Abt meanwhile enters his second season of GP2 in 2014, having finished runner-up in GP3 in '12.
The 21-year-old, son of team owner Hans-Jurgen Abt, added: "I was really thrilled with the ideas of Formula E from the very beginning and obviously even more about Abt Sportsline competing with a team of their own.
"That I'm part of the line-up in the inaugural season is both an honour and a huge challenge."
Ex-F1 drivers Sebastien Buemi, Karun Chandhok, Tonio Liuzzi, Takuma Sato, Jaime Alguersuari and Christian Klien are among the drivers to have formally lodged an interest in contesting Formula E's first season.
Teams will move into the series' new base at Donington Park in May to prepare for initial track tests. Di Grassi is expected to run with Abt for the first time in June.
The 10-round calendar commences in Beijing on September 13.