DHL AND FORMULA E: Responses to questions from Renata Correia, Journalist from EPRIX NEWS, by Pier Luigi Ferrari (Deputy Managing Director Motorsport Division) – DHL Global Forwarding.
EPRIX NEWS: Could you explain the purpose of DHL Americas and its mission and vision?
Pier Luigi Ferrari: At DHL Express Americas, we help people and businesses throughout the region and throughout the world achieve their goals.Who are we? We are 15,000 people in the Americas moving parcels, documents and freight – including over 450 tons of Formula E cars and equipment – around the globe safely and efficiently using our green logistics network.
DHL Express is the largest division of Deutsche Post DHL, the global leader in logistics, with 315,000 employees working in over 220 countries and territories, transporting goods by land, sea and air, always seeking the best ways to reduce our impact on the environment.
We care about the world we live in and we actively support environmental protection, disaster management and education wherever we work. Our vision is to be THE logistics company for the world, delivering excellence and simplifying the lives of our customers. We make a difference for people.
EPRIX NEWS: What is DHL’s partnership with Formula E? Could sustainability be a word that links both?
Pier Luigi Ferrari: Yes, sustainability is indeed the key concept in the relationship between DHL and Formula E, whose electric-powered vehicles have opened a new chapter in international formula racing.
As part of our drive toward a sustainable future, DHL became the Official Logistics Partner of the new FIA Formula E Championship that began in September 2014. A pioneer in green logistics joined forces with pacesetter in clean auto racing. With our proven 30-year track record in motorsports logistics, we are not only piloting the behind-the-scenes logistics race fueled by the most efficient technology and processes available today, we are also committing to the same future, using technology to make our fleets greener and more efficient.
And with its unmatched experience in logistics, DHL Motorsports has a proven track record for getting the world’s top international racing series onto the starting grids. The partnership offers important benefits to both participants. DHL and Formula E share a pioneering spirit and a commitment to a sustainable future. As the global leader in sustainable transportation solutions, DHL provides Formula E with access to its global network and green logistics expertise. And Formula E provides impetus to DHL by advancing electrification of autos and other innovations that could help our customers.
EPRIX NEWS: Your handling of logistics in Miami was fantastic. It is the first time in season that we have the sensation of an existence of a large structure in Formula E as the paddocks and transportation in Formula 1? Will it be the pattern for the entire championship along the rest of season?
Pier Luigi Ferrari: The logistics involved in moving Formula E around the world are staggering, and require the expertise DHL has gained over the last 30 years plus to deliver everything to the right places at the right times. Transporting Formula E is like moving a small high-tech army around the world.
For each race, DHL has to carefully classify, pack and ship 450 tons of cars and equipment. In broad terms, this includes 40 cars (including a spare), circuit equipment, 200 tires, 40 batteries and 20 charging units. Of course, DHL also must carefully identify each item – large and small – so that it can be accounted for at the end of each international leg.
All this is moved by land, sea and air. DHL uses specially designed transport boxes for optimum load capacity and environmentally friendly vehicles, selecting the right carriers to achieve the most efficient transportation mode and managing routes to meet deadlines for each stop in the racing calendar. And as this is happening, DHL is measuring and managing the carbon footprint of each journey, choosing the most environmentally friendly means of transportation.
EPRIX NEWS: We could see that storms hinder adjustments at the track that caused problems in practice tests before the qualifying session. Could you share with us how is the organization of the logistics and transportation of an intense event that occurs in a single day? Can weather really mess up a lot?
Pier Luigi Ferrari: DHL handles all the international logistics for Formula E, but once we deliver the cargo to each championship city, the local promoter steps up with all logistics having to do with the actual race. The Formula E organizers are responsible for all actions taken during the races themselves, such as dealing with harsh weather conditions.
EPRIX NEWS: DHL is also sponsoring the ABT team, right? Lucas di Grassi is driver of that team and he is also in contention for the championship lead. Can you talk about your relationship with the team and with Lucas?
Pier Luigi Ferrari: We are extremely pleased to be working with the ABT Team and to have Lucas as part of our lineup. He is a highly talented and experienced driver with an exceptional record.
EPRIX NEWS: What are the plans of DHL and the FIA in order to improve logistics and transport involving the category? Are there more urgent problems to be solved?
Pier Luigi Ferrari: DHL evaluates the results of our logistics at every stage of the circuit. And with the unmatched experience of DHL Motorsport, we are in a unique position to analyze and evaluate each step in the logistics and transportation process. Going forward, our plan is to maximize efficiency and reduce our carbon footprint by as much as possible.
EPRIX NEWS: Do you think Formula E will become a big success and attract fans all over the world? Why?
Pier Luigi Ferrari: Formula E is a new and exciting way of participating in international Formula racing, and it already has created an enthusiastic fan base around the world. E is very different from other Formula racing because it uses electric cars that sharply reduce the sport’s carbon footprint. One potentially huge audience is the millennials — young people who are excited by racing but are very concerned about the effects of fossil fuels and pollution on the environment. With its incredibly fast electric cars, Formula E has a special appeal to millennials. Formula E is sending an important message about how racing cars can be powered by electricity instead of fossil fuels, thus helping to lower emissions and improve the environment we all live in.
EPRIX NEWS: Please send a message to the Brazilian fans of Formula E.
Pier Luigi Ferrari: To all our friends and Formula E fans in Brazil … we are very proud to have a champion Brazilian driver on our team and feel more optimistic than ever about the future of Formula E in the Americas and the rest of the world.
We very much appreciate your interest and enthusiasm as we move ahead through the circuit races, and look forward to your continuing support.