"Lightning in a Throttle: Three Electric Vehicle Victories"
By Kristen Hall-Geisler
Don't let Kristen Hall-Geisler's pleasant smile and genuinely war personality deceive you Kristen is a serious, well educated automotive industry expert and experienced author, journalist and professional speaker who is also quite entertaining.
Kristen discussed early battery-powered electric vehicles in racing competition and how those events have come full circle and an ever growing part of motorsports racing in our time.Her presentation began with the recounting of the first automobile race held in the United States on November 28, 1895 sponsored by Chicago Times-Herald newspaper to promote growth of the American automobile industry. Unfortunate for electric vehicle operators their initial charging station was not close to the race start and they were forced out of competition without the chance for race start. That race would be won by Charles Duryea and his motorized wagon. Nonetheless the race marked the arrival of battery-powered electric motorized vehicles as a viable entry in this burgeoning industry.
Several auto manufacturers would develop, mass produce and sell battery electric-powered automobiles, most notably early Twentieth Century manufacturers such as Cleveland, Ohio's Baker Electric, Rausch, Rausch & Lang as well as Chicago's Detroit Electric, the Electric Vehicle Company of New York, Connecticut's Columbia Motor Car Company and Pope Manufacturing Company of Hartford. Battery electric-powered automobiles would be overtaken in manufacturing, public acceptance and sales by kerosene and/or gasoline fuel internal-combustion engine autos due mostly to driving range and insufficient road re-charging distribution system infrastructure as now.
That said, Kristen moved forward rapidly to inform us of the progress being made in modern day motorsports use of electric motors in racing, particularly noting the Formula E (electric) series of open wheel racing.
Tom Adamich - "Cuban Motorsports"