>> Maserati MSG Racing is using AI and edge technologies to accelerate insights, analyze competitors’ strategies, and quickly adapt to win more races in the Formula E championship.

In the Formula E championship, Maserati MSG Racing is pushing limits beyond sustainable mobility, advancing the way it uses data to enhance performance. The team gains a competitive edge using artificial intelligence (AI) for faster, more precise insights into competitors’ strategies. With an integral data solution and real-time synchronization from trackside to headquarters, every team member is empowered to do their best work.

Racing to the future of mobility

Formula E is more than a motorsport. It’s also a test bed for electric vehicle technology to advance development and promote the adoption of sustainable mobility.

Maserati MSG Racing runs with sustainability, diversity, and inclusion as its core values. "The approach we take is to have team spirit first. Then, we try to build with the best person in each position. We’re all pushing to optimize every aspect of the race," says Season 9 Racing Director, Jérémy Colançon.

"The goal is to win as many races as possible," he continues. "There are different parts to it. For the qualifying round, we need to do the fastest lap we can. And then for the race, we need to manage energy while being quicker than our competitors."

Several factors make Formula E racing unique. Most races happen on temporary city street circuits. Cars have the same build, with regulations limiting component variations in order to maintain closer levels of performance and competition. And there’s attack mode, which gives drivers a temporary power boost when activated.


A data-driven strategy to win

When elite drivers Maximilian Günther and Jehan Daruvala take the wheel, they rely on the work and expertise of a larger team, both at the track and back at Maserati MSG Racing’s headquarters in Monaco.

"We’re using a lot of data to optimize the strategy and solutions we deliver for our drivers. Data from the simulators and the race weekend, from our team and other competitors. The goal was to get a better, faster treatment of all this data," explains Colançon.

To maximize data value and accelerate insights, the team partnered with Hewlett Packard Enterprise. "HPE knows well how to use data and how to integrate it into models. This is the added value we get, to put the data together and deliver one solution that is easy to use and understand."

The solution includes the deployment of AI projects to save time and improve team productivity and accuracy, infrastructure at trackside and headquarters, the connectivity between both, data protection, and fully managed services.

"We have a longtime partnership with HPE," says Laurie Clog, head of partnerships, Maserati MSG Racing. "They came on board in season 5 and we’ve grown together. We reached our first podium and first win together, so we really see the before and after of partnering with HPE."

The need for processing speed

Formula E fans don’t get to see what it takes to prepare for every race weekend. "We run three days in the simulator to prepare the driver and the team for every scenario we have during the race," states Colançon. The simulator enables the team to learn the circuit, define car setup, play out different strategies, and optimize energy management. HPE helps improve simulator capacity and data storage.

Just like on track, speed is crucial in processing data before and after the race. "HPE helps us achieve speed and efficiency — key elements that make a race team successful. That’s why this partnership is a huge advantage to us," says James Rossiter, season 9 team principal, Maserati MSG Racing.

Each Wednesday before the race, the team sets its garage up. This includes the edge infrastructure, which enables real-time processing of a wide range of data, including audio and video from the team’s drivers and other competitors. HPE SimpliVity delivers an integrated solution with simplified setup, management, and backup while HPE Edgeline supports AI use cases. The data collected and processed in this infrastructure is shared in real time with the team’s data center in Monaco, which features HPE Nimble Storage and HPE ProLiant DL360 Gen10 Servers with NVIDIA® GPUs for optimized performance of AI workloads. This data center was recently relocated to the team’s new headquarters with help from HPE Relocation Services.

Accelerating visual analysis

With all the race sessions falling on Friday and Saturday, the Maserati MSG Racing team gets a limited window of time to analyze data and make informed decisions. "This is why we need tools and processes that are quick and efficient, to make sure that we are optimizing during this really short time," explains Colançon.

That is where AI expertise from HPE now aids the team. "When we have back-to-back races, people are tired and can easily make mistakes. AI tools also help us avoid human error," Clog adds.

The racing team participated in the HPE Artificial Intelligence Services — Transformation Workshop, to define an AI road map. After that, the team started working with HPE AI and data transformation services to deploy several use cases.

One of those is using video analytics to optimize energy management. "We analyze the battery levels of the other competitors during the race. All cars start with 100% of energy, and then it decreases depending on how drivers use it." Colançon describes. "The HPE solution finds battery level percentages on video and runs those numbers through a model to make sure we are using the right strategy."

HPE also helps accelerate image processing. For example, the team uses geometrical analysis to figure out competitors’ car setups. The time to complete this process was reduced from 4 hours to 30 minutes.

Keeping a close ear on competitors

During the race, teams can listen to all the drivers’ radio communication. Maserati MSG Racing worked with HPE to develop an AI-driven speech-to-text solution to gain broader, faster, more precise insights into competitor’s strategies.

The solution was developed to record audio, translate and transcribe, and deliver searchable files — all in real time and fully integrated into the team’s core software and tools. "We used to need four to five people to do this. We were only able to listen to half of the grid, with some delay, and it wasn’t always clear. Now, we can analyze 100% of the conversations. That’s very powerful for us. It allows our people to perform other tasks that add more value to the team."

"This also helped us adapt to Formula E regulation changes," relates Vithu Yogarajah, Maserati MSG Racing’s chief simulation engineer. "The number of engineers we’re allowed to have following the race was reduced, but now we don’t need any team member focusing on radio communication."

"Now, we can better anticipate other competitors’ strategy and know, for example, when they’ll activate attack mode. We need this information to quickly adapt during the race," Colançon adds.

Always connected, always secure

Data transfer needs to happen at the speed of the race. "We have 30 people on track, and six more following the race at our Monaco headquarters. Everyone needs to be linked and fully in sync," says Colançon. That’s why the team uses HPE Aruba Networking technology for its core network and Wi-Fi.

"We are using multiple networks, such as the car network where we can connect to have access to sensor and settings data, or the radio system. It’s very complex, and HPE Aruba Networking switching allows us to set up every network to be reliable," says Yogarajah.

"The wireless network with seamless roaming allows our engineers to move freely around the track and always be connected in a secure way."

The high-performance network enables real-time data synchronization between race location and headquarter’s data center.

To keep its competitive edge, the team must also ensure data security. "We’re gaining performance from this data, so it’s critical for us to maintain and protect it," Yogarajah explains. "We have the proper hardware solutions for this, and cloud backup as another level of protection."

HPE helps enhance data security from different angles. HPE StoreOnce and Veeam power an integral backup solution, HPE Managed Services delivers firmware control and regular updates, and HPE Aruba Networking ClearPass ensures automated zero trust access control at the factory and garage. Another ongoing project is an Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) security solution to complete the current firewall configuration and enhance protection of the full environment.

Maximizing time and talents

Colançon speaks on the impact the partnership has on the racing team: "We are able to focus more on our specific jobs. HPE provides more powerful tools to reduce the time and manpower we need to run analysis. Time is critical during race weekends. And without these tools, we would need to maybe double the size of the team to deliver this kind of results."

The partnership with HPE keeps evolving. For season 10, the racing team plans to deploy HPE ProLiant DL380 Gen11 Servers with NVIDIA L40S GPUs to speed time to value. It will also continue to work with AI experts from HPE Services to develop additional use cases and enhance team performance.

As the partnership continues, Maserati MSG Racing keeps pushing the limits of electric vehicles to win more races and advance sustainable mobility.