Evo India - - Contents - Words : Di­payan Dutta

Pi­o­neer­ing rock scaler Apoorva guides two pals into Hi­malayan thin air, step

by dizzy step

IN MANY WAYS, THE 80s were the golden age of the quin­tes­sen­tial manly man, when big­ger was un­ques­tion­ably bet­ter, hairy chests were sexy, Spring­steen ruled the ra­dio waves, and For­mula cars were for the men­tally im­bal­anced. The ’80s gave us leg­ends like Senna, Prost, Pi­quet, the first forced in­duc­tion For­mula one car and most of all, a re­nais­sance. Things have changed now, manly men are a thing of the past, and are mostly found semi-pick­led in bars, bleat­ing on about the good old days.

Ef­fi­ciency and cost-ef­fec­tive­ness is the theme of the new mil­len­nium, and the ush­ers for this new gen­er­a­tion, Senna, Prost and Pi­quet. In­tro­duc­ing For­mula E, the first ever fully elec­tric sin­gle-seater rac­ing se­ries. While the last names may be fa­mil­iar, the gen­er­a­tions are dif­fer­ent. Bruno Senna (Ayr­ton’s Nephew), Ni­co­las Prost (Alain’s son) and Nel­son Pi­quet Ju­nior are among the more prom­i­nent names on the cir­cuit. The lone In­dian racer in this all im­por­tant se­ries is Karun Chand­hok, who for the first time in his ca­reer, is rep­re­sent­ing an in­dian team in the form of Mahin­dra Rac­ing. The gut­tural scream that has come to be as­so­ci­ated with For­mula rac­ing may be re­placed by the jet-like drone of an elec­tric rac­ing car, but if the first race sets the tone for what this se­ries holds in store, the manly man may not be ex­tinct after all, sim­ply evolved.

For­mula One may well still be the pin­na­cle of for­mula rac­ing, but what For­mula E brings to the ta­ble is a prom­ise. One that says the fu­ture of mo­tor­heads is se­cure, that when the last drop of fuel has met its fiery end, that man’s pur­suit of speed can be con­tin­ued. Right from the get-go some good-old fash­ioned an­ar­chy en­sued as pole-sit­ter Bruno Senna’s wheel

Why For­mula E is be­ing hailed as the “fu­ture” The first race set the tone for what this se­ries holds: old-school rac­ing

came straight off the chas­sis, and tur­moil fol­lowed right up to the last cor­ner where, Ni­co­las Prost’s at­tempt at a last-minute dive on Nick Hei­d­feld ended with the for­mer spi­ralling through the air in a huff of metal, fuel and testos­terone, mak­ing Lu­cas di Grassi the first ever win­ner of the For­mula E se­ries. The po­lar bears are happy, the manly men are back, and this may well be the next Golden Age of For­mula rac­ing.

Main: Karun Chad­hok flat-out in Beijing. Be­low: Tag-Heuer re­turns to rac­ing as

the of­fi­cial time keeper.

In­dia | Oc­to­ber 2014

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