“In Formula E you don’t have much time to think about decisions”Stuttgart. From his first race at the helm of the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team there were no points – race three, however, yielded an historic one-two result: Florian Modlinger has made a dream start as the new Director Factory Motorsport for Formula E. In the latest “Inside E” podcast, he talks about the triumph in Mexico, its importance to the team, the key factors for success in Formula E and his goals for this season.
“When Pascal and André crossed the finish line and the team’s greatest success to date was safely in the bag, you could really sense the relief in the pits. At that moment, all the pressure fell away and everyone around me was simply ecstatic. I found this very moving.” Florian Modlinger, 41, is proud of his team, which did a flawless job at the Mexico City E-Prix on the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez and kept their cool when rivals were at times faster: “The fact that we stuck to our strategy from the first to the last lap was the key to our success.”
As a child, his motor racing heroes were Alain Prost, Ayrton Senna and Nigel Mansell. With his father and brother, he watched them on TV with great admiration at his Bavarian family home in Asbach near Friedberg. He witnessed his first Formula 1 race live at the racetrack in 1994 at the Hungaroring in Hungary. By that stage, motorsport had long become his passion and he was determined to turn it into a career. After studying mechanical engineering at the Technical University of Munich, he devoted himself to pursuing this dream, and so far, he says with a smile, “it’s worked out pretty well.” At Porsche, he has overall responsibility for the Formula E project. To have been given the chance to work for a car manufacturer with such an illustrious history makes him “very proud.” When asked what he wants to achieve with the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team this season, his answer, even before the Mexico triumph, was: “We want to win races and fight for the world championship title. That must be our goal.”
For Florian Modlinger, Formula E poses a very special challenge compared to other racing series. Firstly, the race action is brought to the fans in major cities and as such reach an entirely new target group. Secondly, street circuits present drivers and teams with very specific demands. The layout and the surface are different. These factors must be taken into account, with adaptations made through meticulous preparation.
“Energy management, tyre management and race strategy are the critical factors,” he says, drawing a comparison to chess, or rather speed chess. “In Formula E, too, you don’t have much time to think about your decisions, you have to respond quickly to changing situations. That’s the only way to be successful.”
The Porsche Formula E podcast is published in English and can be downloaded from the Porsche Newsroom. “Inside E” is also available on other platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Google Podcasts.
More information, film footage and photos in the Porsche Newsroom: newsroom.porsche.com
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"Inside E" podcast - episode 24: Florian Modlinger, Director Factory Motorsport Formula E