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Team Aguri, formerly Amlin Aguri and officially the Team Aguri Formula E Team, was an international motor racing team founded by former Formula One and 24 Hours of Le Mans driver Aguri Suzuki (Executive Chairman) and Mark Preston (Team Principal) to compete in the FIA Formula E Championship for electric cars. The team was based in Tokyo, Japan, and was in a technical partnership with McLaren. At the end of the 2015–16 season, the team was sold to China Media Capital and renamed Techeetah.[1]

Japan Team Aguri
Founded2013
Team principal(s)Aguri Suzuki
Mark Preston
Current seriesFormula E
Noted driversJapan Takuma Sato
Portugal António Félix da Costa
Japan Sakon Yamamoto
United Kingdom Katherine Legge
Mexico Salvador Durán
Germany René Rast
France Nathanaël Berthon
China Ma Qinghua

Team historyEdit

Team Aguri was the creation of Suzuki and Preston, who previously created the Super Aguri F1 team in just 100 days, which competed in Formula One between 2006 and 2008. On 1 November 2013, Team Aguri reached an agreement with the FIA to become the sixth of ten teams to sign up to race in the inaugural season of the Formula E series.[2]

Today is a new chapter for the Super Aguri name and I'm proud that our team will represent Japan in the inaugural Formula E series. Zero emissions racing is a progressive concept for the motorsport industry, and after more than 40 years as both a driver and team owner, I see Formula E as a great stride towards the future.

— Aguri Suzuki, FIA Formula E[2]

2014–15 seasonEdit

It was announced on 27 June 2014 that the first female driver to drive in Formula E would be Katherine Legge from Great Britain. The team also announced an agreement with Amlin for the insurance company to become the title sponsor of the team, which would compete as "Amlin Aguri".[3] On 2 July 2014, António Félix da Costa from Portugal was confirmed as the second driver. It was announced that Takuma Sato would fill in for the team at the first round in Beijing, due to Félix da Costa having previous commitments in the DTM series.[4] Salvador Durán replaced Legge from the Punta del Este round. Félix da Costa took the team's first win in Buenos Aires, and the team ultimately finished in seventh place in the teams' championship.

Takuma is a proven driver and his presence will provide unity and experience for the team. He has great knowledge of how to race on street circuits, which will also be an important attribute for us.

— Team Chairman Aguri Suzuki[4]

2015–16 seasonEdit

On 24 June 2015 ahead of the London ePrix, Team Principal Mark Preston confirmed that team would continue to use the Renault powertrain from the inaugural Formula E season in the 2015–16 season, to focus development on other areas of the car. In doing so they became the first team to take this approach, in the hope that the older powertrains would provide greater reliability than their rivals while exploring other areas where performance gains could be made, such as software.

Speaking to Current E, Preston commented: "We're going to stay with the current car. Because the battery is not changing (it's going to be refreshed), that means that we've only got the same amount of power in the race and therefore there is no real difference in the race mode. And the gearbox is fine. There's 170kW that we can use, but the calculation says that if you can only just do the race at 150kW, then you're not going to be able to suddenly do the whole race at 170kW. You're going to have to mix and match. At McLaren myself and Peter actually carried over one of the cars one year and came second in the championship by one point from Ferrari, so we know it's possible".[5]

The team would be renamed to "Team Aguri", Amlin having terminated their sponsorship of the team after the conclusion of the first season.[6]

Ultimately, the team struggled to compete against its rivals with new powertrains, failing to score any podium finishes and slipping to eighth in the teams' championship. At the end of the season, the team was sold to China Media Capital and renamed Techeetah;[1] several key management figures would remain at the team, but Aguri Suzuki would step down.[7] At the time of its purchase, the team was in talks with Renault e.Dams to secure a customer powertrain supply for the upcoming season.[8]


TestingEdit

On 10–11 August 2015, Aguri had its first official test in the series' second season at Donington Park with Salvador Durán and Formula Renault 3.5 driver Tom Dillmann driving the Team Aguri car. On day one, Durán ended up fifth fastest with a time of 1:32.549 whereas Dillmann only completed two laps. On day two, only Dillmann set a time – tenth with a lap time of 1:32.369. On 17–18 August 2015, the second test took place with WEC driver Nicolas Lapierre driving the first day and GP2 driver Nathanaël Berthon on day two. Lapierre managed ninth with a lap time of 1:32.694, 2.5 seconds slower than the fastest time, set by Abt driver Daniel Abt. Berthon set a time of 1:31.185, good enough for eighth place on the day.

ResultsEdit

Year Chassis Powertrain Tyres No. Drivers 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Points T.C.
Amlin Aguri
2014–15 Spark SRT01-e SRT01-e1 M BEI PUT PDE BUE MIA LBH MCO BER MSC LON 66 7th
55   Takuma Sato Ret
  António Félix da Costa 8 Ret 1 6 7 9 11 7
  Sakon Yamamoto Ret Ret
77   Katherine Legge 15 15
  Salvador Durán 16 DSQ 10 Ret Ret 16 6 17 8
Team Aguri
2015–16 Spark SRT01-e SRT01-e2 M BEI PUT PDE BUE MEX LBH PAR BER LON 32 8th
55   António Félix da Costa Ret 6 6 Ret Ret Ret 8 6 11
  René Rast NC
77   Nathanaël Berthon 8 15 14
  Salvador Durán Ret 15 14
  Ma Qinghua Ret 14 11 12
2016–17: Techeetah
Notes
  • ^1 – In the inaugural season, all teams were supplied with a spec powertrain by McLaren.
  • ^2 – The team opted to revert to the previous McLaren motor used in the inaugural season.[9]
  • † – Driver did not finish the race, but was classified as he completed over 90% of the race distance.
  • * – Season still in progress.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Klein, Jamie (28 June 2016). "Team Aguri concludes Chinese takeover deal". Motorsport.com. Retrieved 17 September 2019.
  2. ^ a b "Super Aguri joins FIA Formula E Championship as sixth team". FIA FormulaE. 1 November 2013.
  3. ^ "Formula E: Super Aguri signs title sponsor and female driver". SportsPro Media. Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  4. ^ a b "Formula E: Sato gets Aguri seat for Beijing". racer.com. Racer Special Projects. Retrieved 29 June 2015.
  5. ^ "Exclusive: Aguri to retain S1 powertrain in S2". Current E. 24 June 2015.
  6. ^ Biesbrouck, Tim (24 June 2015). "Amlin and Aguri to split ways". ElectricAutosport.com. Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  7. ^ Mitchell, Scott. "Owner Aguri Suzuki to leave his Formula E team after season two". Autosport.com. Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  8. ^ "Renault to supply customer Formula E power in season three". Motorsport.com. Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  9. ^ Biesbrouck, Tim (8 July 2015). "Exclusive: Team Aguri's Mark Preston on season two and beyond". Electric Autosport. Formula Blue Media. Retrieved 13 July 2015.

External linksEdit