Abu Dhabi will host the world’s largest autonomous car racing at the iconic Yas Marina Circuit in the second quarter of 2024 with a prize pool of up to US$2.25 million.
The Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League aims to push the boundaries of autonomous mobility by hosting challenges to advance R&D in autonomous racing and artificial intelligence (AI).
The applied research executed in preparation for the league will develop cutting-edge and low-risk solutions to significantly reduce fuel consumption and carbon emissions through the increased efficiency, while at the same time increasing safety and performance standards of motorsports and commercial transportation.
““Abu Dhabi is a rising hub for STEM empowerment and envisioning a decarbonised economy, which is why we are proud to launch the Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League,” said Faisal Al Bannai, secretary general, Advanced Technology Research Council (ATRC).
ATRC is responsible for defining Abu Dhabi’s research and development strategy, consolidating funds for efficient investment, and driving policy and regulation.
“The Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League will set new benchmarks for autonomous vehicles and help them pre-empt and prepare for unknown challenges as they become more mainstream.”Faisal Al Bannai, ATRC
According to Al Bannai, the new racing league will not only create a new community platform for motorsports fans.
“It feature an open development model, supporting faster progress, faster testing, and greater innovation. Machine learning and reinforcement learning will be key to collecting data and developing the technology of these vehicles.”
The Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League is spearheaded by ASPIRE, ATRC’s program development arm which drives the creation of future transformative technologies. ASPIRE works in consultation with cross-sector industry stakeholders, universities, and research institutes to frame problem statements.
Collaboration with Japan Race Promotion
The new league will feature the Dallara-built Super Formula cars that are adequately equipped for autonomous racing. The Super Formula cars are the fastest in the world, outside of Formula One, and their appearance at the Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League is made possible by Japan Race Promotion, Inc. (JRP).
ASPIRE will be able to leverage its exclusive access to the Dallara Super Formula car to push the limits and high speeds of autonomous driving. Key members of JRP will also share their significant expertise in race management accumulated for over 50 years since 1973.
“In Japan, we are proud of our pioneering heritage in both motor racing and advanced technology. As Japan's premier racing series, Super Formula, we are delighted to partner with ASPIRE for the Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League to see racing and technology come further together,” said Yoshihisa Ueno, JRP president.
“We have accumulated over 50 years of expertise, and always operated at the forefront of racing. Our SF23 race car, which will be used in the Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League, is a huge leap forward in technical performance and, importantly, carbon neutrality, so it’s very exciting to see it being driven by an autonomous technology stack,” he added.Yoshihisa Ueno, JRP
Andrea Pontremoli, CEO of Dallara, said: “For over 50 years, the Dallara name and motor racing have been in lockstep. We have designed and manufactured some of the most important racing cars in the sport, forever pushing the boundaries of what has been possible.”
“We are so excited to partner with ASPIRE to shape the future of mobility. The Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League will set the pace and drive new levels of performance, safety, efficiency, and importantly, sustainability, in autonomous technologies."Andrea Pontremoli, Dallara
Race viewers will be invited to dive into a new world of entertainment, experiencing the thrill of head-to-head autonomous car racing, with live updates from Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) infographics and real-time displays shown on screen.
The Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing Race is expected to be the first in a series of autonomous vehicle races, which will include autonomous offroad racing, autonomous drone racing, and more. This will make Abu Dubai and the United Arab Emirates the world capital for extreme autonomous racing.
The race is open to all teams from previous autonomous racing challenges, teams from universities around the world, public and private research institutes who want to participate.