Due to the ongoing investigation into the cause of a garage fire at Valencia's Circuit Ricardo Tormo on the second day of preseason Formula E testing, the session was to be postponed. At around 1 PM local time on Tuesday, there was a small explosion in the pit box of battery supplier WAE (previously Williams Advanced Engineering). Formula E said that their "on-track Incident Response Team reacted swiftly to contain the incident," which included the prompt evacuation of team members and the cordoning off of the affected area. The explosion may have caused far more damage if emergency measures hadn't been taken. The incident's cause is now under investigation, and whatever issues that are found will be fixed. Thursday should mark the return of normalcy for on-track operations after the investigation and subsequent safety assessments have been completed.
Formula E: What Happened During the Valencia Pre-season Testing
The all-electric championship's organisers made the official announcement that Tuesday's sessions were cancelled at around 3 pm local time. The future of the remaining testing sessions planned for this week is currently up in the air.
— ABB FIA Formula E World Championship (@FIAFormulaE) October 24, 2023
The statement read: "In response to an incident earlier today at Formula E pre-season testing in Valencia when a fire caused damage to a garage in the pit lane, on-track testing activity will not go ahead tomorrow, Wednesday. Damage from the incident was contained following the activation of emergency procedures. One person was taken to hospital as a precaution but released without treatment. An investigation into the cause of the incident is ongoing but has already identified an issue which is being addressed. The investigation and further safety assessments will be completed and we aim to resume on-track activities from Thursday, subject to final confirmation tomorrow."
At the end of Tuesday's practice session, Jaguar's Mitch Evans had set the pace with a time of 1:24.474 seconds. Two sessions of three hours each were planned for each day of the week from Tuesday through Thursday for the preseason testing.
Jaguar TCS Racing's Mitch Evans took the lead at the start, with Season 6 winner Antonio Felix da Costa of TAG Heuer Porsche trailing by only 0.143 seconds. Sebastien Buemi of Envision Racing, who won the Teams championship, produced the third-fastest time. All seven of the top finishers on the timesheet, including rookie tester Taylor Barnard in the NEOM McLaren and veterans Edoardo Mortara (Mahindra Racing) and Pascal Wehrlein (TAG Heuer Porsche) and Maximilian Guenther (Maserati MSG Racing), posted times faster than the 1 minute, 25-second benchmark set by Guenther in testing last year.