Last weekend, the Enefit 24h EV race took place at the Kuršėnai Autodrome in Lithuania. Featuring unmodified electric cars–equipped with BlackVue dashboard cameras, the event set a number of “first”.
11 Teams, 54 drivers
Eleven teams totaling 54 drivers took part in the race. For the occasion, event partner Eldrive installed three 50kW charging stations.
To win, the teams had to complete as many laps as possible within 24 hours. Starting positions were determined by a drag race prior to the main event.
During the race, drivers had to change every 2 hours.
The “Antėja Racing Team” (Opel Ampera), “Audi Team by Autojuta” (Audi e-tron GT), “Moller Auto Volkswagen” (VW ID.3) and “Solitek Nova” (Tesla Model 3) teams became the winners of the grueling marathon in their respective classes.
A Tesla Model 3 win
The Solitek Nova team drove the most laps and distance. Their Tesla Model 3 completed 619 laps, which is 947 kilometers. While the team started second behind the Audi team by Autojuta in their Audi e-tron GT, they managed to achieve victory in the long run.
The outcome was not only determined by driving and engineering prowess but also, and perhaps more than ever, by strategic planning of the charging periods and average speed. Each team could use the charging stations up to 30 minutes at a time. In the early hours of the race, the teams coordinated with each other cordially to ensure smooth operation. However, as the stakes grew higher as the competition went on, tensions started to rise between the teams. To complicate matters, the teams were not allowed to overtake except in straight lines.
A carbon-neutral race
According to the organizers, the “Enefit 24-hour electric car race” will go down in the history of Lithuanian motor sports as the first 24-hour race and as the first event with a neutral C02 footprint.
Additionally, the organizers pointed out that not a single paper document was printed since the start of the race. All the information reached the teams electronically.
“I think this first race was really a success. There were many unknowns. At around 3 o’clock in the morning, together with the team managers, we even had to decide on a partial change of the rules. And yet, I am confident that we will organize the Enefit 24-hour electric car race next year, and technical solutions will allow the number of participants to be increased to at least sixteen”, said race organizer Darius Grinbergas.
The participating vehicles were outfitted with BlackVue dash cams – you can watch the video recap here.