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Formula E

Formula E: peregrine falcon or Felipe Massa – who wins in a drag race? Watch here

  • Felipe Massa takes on fastest animal on the planet
  • All-new Gen2 car hits top speeds of 280km/h
PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 11 December, 2018, 4:37pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 11 December, 2018, 4:37pm

Formula E car or peregrine falcon – what would your money be on in a drag race? Well, the organisers of the all-electric racing series decided to find out.

Felipe Massa, the ex-Formula One star who will race with Venturi in the upcoming season five of Formula E, went up against the fastest animal on the planet behind the wheel of his new Gen2 car.

“It was an incredible experience for me to race against the fastest member of the animal kingdom – it’s not something I will forget in a hurry,” Massa said.

The peregrine falcon is capable of reaching speeds of 320 kilometres per hour when diving through the skies, while Formula E’s advanced new-look Gen2 car can accelerate to 100km/h in 2.8 seconds, and reach top speeds of around 280km/h.

Reigning champion Jean-Eric Vergne outpaced a cheetah on the Western Cape of South Africa ahead of season four’s opening race in Hong Kong last year.

But Formula E asked fans on social media which animal they would like to see take on one of their drivers ahead of Saturday’s Saudi Arabia E-Prix – and this time even sterner competition was found.

“I like the fact that this idea came from the fans, and Formula E listened and accepted the challenge,” said Brazil’s Massa, 37, who had 11 grand prix wins in F1 and finished runner-up in 2008.

“The footage from the drive is very special and it was a privilege to take part.”

A lure was attached to the roll hoop of the advanced new-look Gen2 car, with the bird trained to hunt it down, as Brazilian Massa tried to outrun his opponent 90km southwest of the Unesco World Heritage Site in Ad Diriyah.

The town on the north-western outskirts of Saudi capital Riyadh will host the opening race of season five on December 15.

“I’m looking forward to returning to Ad Diriyah and to start racing,” Massa said. It’ll be my first race in Formula E and I’m eager to get behind the wheel again.

“I’ve missed racing and this series has shown to be one of the most competitive out there.”