World's first electric boat racing series is the latest venture from Alejandro Agag, the man behind the Formula E and Extreme E electric car racing championships
The man behind Extreme E and Formula E motorsport championships - Alejandro Agag - is now moving off-road for his next battery-powered venture -spearheading the launch of the world's first electric boat championship.
The new racing series - dubbed E1 - officially launched on Friday and is envisaged as "a technology test-bed for marine electric technology", the organisers said in a statement.
"The advances achieved in E1 will be then used to improve all kind of electric watercraft, supporting the transition to a cleaner water mobility for the global industry," they said. "E1 will also showcase electric boat performance in a sporting environment which aims to excite the general public, and help support the adoption of electric boats worldwide."
The RaceBird boats themselves - developed by SeaBird Technologies - are still in the design phase, but each will seat a single driver, with the capability of reaching speeds of up to 60 knots, or 69mph, according to E1.
The championships will be tied to the forthcoming inaugural off-road Extreme E electric rally racing tour, with races taking place in a number of Extreme E host locations. These include Lac Rose in Senagalese capital Dakar, and Kali Gandaki Valley in Nepal - areas which have been chosen by Extreme E as they are already bearing the brunt of climate change, which the electric rally series is aiming to draw attention to.
"I am delighted that we are today able to announce this unique step forward in marine-based sport," Agag, the founder of Formula E and Extreme E, said on Friday. "Right now the use of electric power on the water is still at an embryonic stage. My ambition is for the E1 Series to accelerate the adoption of electric boats, to demonstrate how exciting they can be and to promote electric solutions and clean water mobility to marine travel worldwide."
The Spanish businessman is joining forces with Rodi Basso, former motorsport director of McLaren and the powerboating governing body UIM (Union Internationale Motonautique) to organise the boat races, although the exact locations hosting the electric boat races have yet to be confirmed.
As with Extreme E and its predecessor Formula E, the events will be used to raise awareness of global climate issues and promote clean energy. The championship is set to feature 12 teams, and aims to be net zero by the end of its first season, putting in place legacy initiatives to protect ecosystems in the locations it visits, organisers said.
Earlier this month Extreme E secured another major win for its inaugural season, with six-time Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton announcing plans to found his own electric rally team - X44 - for the series.
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