Written by Olly Radley, Edited by Morgan Holiday
Formula E is the leading electric racing series on the planet, and has shown over the past seven years that electric racing can be just as breathtaking as motor racing; we’ll see this notion once again at the inaugural round of the 2022 Formula E championship in Diriyah. 2022 will be the last we see of the Gen2 cars before the start of Gen3 in 2023, so let’s hope they put on a great show in their final outing on track.
New Qualifying Format
A big change going into 2022 is going to be Formula E’s new knockout qualifying format. From Seasons 1-7, Formula E used its very unique group qualifying, but due to the tightly packed field last season, it caused very inconsistent qualifying results and plagued certain drivers’ seasons. In 2022, however, FE is going to move to a new knockout system that will encourage more consistent results.
Qualifying will start off with the 22 drivers split into two groups of 11, that each have 12 minutes to set the fastest lap they can (with at least one lap being set in the first six minutes of the session). The groups are decided off of the championship order, with the odd-numbered drivers in one group and even in the other. Once these two sessions finish, the Top four from each group progress to the Quarter-finals of the knockout stage with positions 5-11 in each group being combined and assembling positions 9-22 on the grid for the race.
In the knockout rounds, drivers will have one chance to set a lap, whilst being set against one other driver, with the faster of the two advancing to the next stage. The eight drivers in the quarter finals are narrowed down to four in the semi-finals and finally to the final two in the finals where it’s a one versus one shootout to decide who will start from pole position for the race.
In 2022, Formula E will face its longest ever calendar, with 16 races being hosted in ten cities across the globe. This weekend, it starts off with a double-header at the Diriyah E-Prix, which has been the host of the opening round since the 2018-19 season. After a two week break they welcome Mexico City E-Prix back to the calendar, which was missing from last season due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The circuit is an altered layout of the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, which has hosted the Mexican Grand Prix in F1 since 2015. Following on from Mexico, they’ll take a eight week hiatus, before returning to the familiar streets of the Rome E-Prix for a doubleheader in the Italian capital. After another two week interval, they’ll head to the streets of the principality, in Monaco! The infamous circuit will return to the calendar for its fifth edition, racing on the Grand Prix layout again after an incredible race last season. In mid-May, they’ll head to the Berlin Tempelhof Airport for the Berlin E-Prix, which has played host to more E-Prix than any other circuit.
As Formula E breaks into Summer, early June will see the inaugural Jakarta E-Prix in the Indonesian capital. The circuit will be constructed in Jakarta’s Ancol Village, a mud land area which has caused quite a stir. In July they’ll see five races, yes five, starting off with the maiden Vancouver E-Prix in the heart of the city. Variations of the circuit have previously been used in Champ Car in the 1990s and early 2000s, and will return to action this year in Formula E. They’ll then cross North America to Brooklyn, New York, for another double-header at the Brooklyn Street Circuit. Right at the end of the month Formula E will jet across the pond to London for the London E-Prix, once again at the Excel Exhibition Centre, a track that goes both indoors and outdoors. Finally they’ll see the season close in the first ever Seoul E-Prix for a double header in the Korean capital. We were supposed to see the race on the calendar in both Season 6 & 7 but it was called off in response to the pandemic. Now let’s see the drivers and teams that will take to these circuits.
Diriyah E-Prix, Sat 28th Jan
Diriyah E-Prix, Sun 29th Jan
Mexico City E-Prix, Sat 12th Feb
Rome E-Prix, Sat 9th April
Rome E-Prix, Sun 10th April
Monaco E-Prix, Sat 30th April
Berlin E-Prix, Sat 14th May
Berlin E-Prix, Sun 15th May
Jakarta E-Prix, Sat 4th June
Vancouver E-Prix, Sat 2nd July
NYC E-Prix, Sat 16th July
NYC E-Prix, Sun 17th July
London E-Prix, Sat 30th July
London E-Prix, Sun 31st July
Seoul E-Prix, Sat 13th Aug
Seoul E-Prix, Sun 14th Aug
There will be less teams on the grid in 2022 due to Audi dropping off the grid after their seventh and final year in the sport, having been there since the first season in 2014.
Despite this, I’m sure the remaining 11 teams will put on a bloody good show, so here they are.
Mercedes-EQ Formula E Team
Let’s begin with the reigning Teams’ and Drivers’ champions, Mercedes-EQ. Like the Gen2 cars, 2022 will be the team’s last hoorah in Formula E, and I’m sure they’ll give it everything they’ve got. Based in the same location as the brand’s Formula 1 team, Mercedes-EQ are easily one of the biggest teams on the grid despite being the youngest, having become a championship-contending outfit after just two seasons. The team is led by Ian James, who’s been working for the Mercedes/Daimler brand for 17 years, working his way up to the top where he now runs the brand’s Formula E efforts, and has been since their debut in 2019.
In the #17 Mercedes entry will be reigning Formula E World Champion, Nyck de Vries. The super dutchman won the inaugural Formula E world championship at the end of a very tight season in which he took two wins amongst four podiums. The 26 year-old has a history of success in single-seaters, having taken the 2019 FIA F2 championship as well as various Formula Renault series in his junior career. 2022 is de Vries’ third year in Formula E and it could be his last with it being his team’s last year as well, the only team he’s competed with in Formula E. Nevertheless it is almost a guarantee Nyck will be up at the front again challenging for the title, but defending his championship may be tough.
My Prediction - third
In the other Merc car will be Stoffel Vandoorne, who’s proven very capable behind the wheel of a Formula E car. The Belgian driver has amassed two wins and seven podiums in his three years in the sport, coming second in the pandemic-affected 2020 season. Like de Vries, Vandoornel has been very successful in single-seaters, as the 2015 GP2 champion, but unlike de Vries, Vandoorne did progress into Formula 1, racing for McLaren for two seasons. He accumulated multiple points scoring races before being replaced at the British team by hotshot Lando Norris. Vandoorne was impeccable in 2021, but was plagued throughout the season by poor luck with his ninth place finish come season’s end not reflecting the season he had. In ‘22, Stoffel should be able to return to where he was in 2020, right at the top of the field fighting his teammate for wins and podiums.
My Prediction - second
Jaguar TCS Racing
Jaguar are one of the most iconic car brands in the world and have established themselves as a leading team on the Formula E scene too. Having been formed ahead of the 2016-17 season, Jaguar have steadily made their way up the grid, finishing a personal best result of second in the Teams’ standings last season. They, like Mercedes, have an incredible pair of drivers in Mitch Evans and Sam Bird and will undoubtedly be title protagonists in 2022. The team is headed by James Barclay, who has overseen Jaguar’s return to motorsport since the launch of the project in 2015 and has been the man behind Jaguar’s ascent up the FE grid.
The aforementioned Mitch Evans has been with Jaguar since day one, joining in their debut year back in Season 3 and has stood by the team to this day. Evans has consistently performed brilliantly for the team, scoring around 70% of all of Jaguar’s points in the five seasons they’ve competed in. Mitch was oh so close in ‘21 but was denied any chance of the title by a fault off the line at the final race in Berlin, placing fourth overall. This, however, will surely spur the New Zealander on to perform in 2022 but with a tough front of the field he may struggle.
My Prediction - fourth
Sam Bird is easily one of the biggest names in Formula E, competing in every race there has ever been, and consistently finding himself at the front of the field. Despite this, Bird is yet to claim the elusive Formula E title, coming close on several occasions. With a long history in single-seaters and endurance, Bird is very experienced and very quick, but his championship results have consistently been plagued by inconsistency, even stopping him from the title last season, where he came sixth. In ‘22 we’ll have a new qualifying format that may suit Bird, but with everyone around him making great strides, his season could be a fierce challenge.
My Prediction - sixth
Techeetah are the most successful team on the grid when it comes to both drivers’ and constructors’ champions. They’ve been around since 2016-17, entering at the same time as Jaguar, but demonstrating far more ability. The Chinese outfit have won the Teams’ Championship twice as well as three Drivers’ Championships with Jean-Eric Vergne and Antonio Felix da Costa, who will both be competing for the team in 2022. The iconic gold of DS Techeetah will once again take to the track in 2022 and will likely be fighting at the front again, with an incredible lineup and likely an incredible car too. Leading DS’ charge in ‘22 will be Mark Preston, who’s been at the helm of the team since its launch in 2015. Mark has had an incredible career in motorsport spanning over 25 years, working at the top tiers of motorsport, and is a huge part of Techeetah’s incredible success.
Antonio Felix da Costa will stay with Techeetah for his third year now, having taken the championship with them in 2020, after a long and arduous journey up the Formula E grid to a team where he can finally compete for championships. Da Costa has shown his ability to completely dominate in Formula E, taking the 2020 title by a record 71 points, at one point taking three wins in a row. Da Costa is a fan favourite who simply loves racing and will get behind the wheel of anything he can, but is also a fierce competitor on track, which is very evident in his Formula E results. Due to his incredible pace and consistency, I think in 2022 Antonio will join his teammate in becoming a two-time champion.
My Prediction - first
Alongside da Costa is the only current two-time champion, Jean-Eric Vergne. As I mentioned, Vergne has two Formula E titles, which he took back to back in Seasons 4 & 5, before da Costa joined Techeetah and strolled to the Season 6 championship. Vergne, also known as ‘JEV’ has previously raced in Formula 1, completing three years from 2012-2014 before being replaced by young talent Max Verstappen. It was at this point Vergne made the switch to Formula E for its inaugural season in 2014/15 racing with Andretti. The Frenchman joined Techeetah in Season 3 and has stayed with the team ever since, having provided him with the tools to win two championships. While 2021 was a tough season for both Techeetahs, placing eighth and tenth respectively, I’m sure they’ll bounce back to their former glory.
My Prediction - fifth
Envision Racing are one of the founding teams of Formula E, sealing their place on the grid all the way back in 2013 as Envision Virgin with their iconic purple and red livery. In 2022 they’ll see a livery overhaul due to long-time partner Virgin exiting the sport, dropping the purple for navy and green. The Envision squad will be led, as always, by Sylvain Filippi, who’s been at the team since day one and has a long history with EVs. The team has never placed lower than fifth in the Teams’ Championship, a record they’ll hope to keep in 2022. Their unchanged lineup of Nick Cassidy and Robin Frijns is solid, as well as their good car, which is all you need to get good results. Despite Audi’s exit from the sport, they will still power Envision, who have been loyal customers since 2018.
2022 is Robin Frijns’ 4th year with Envision and his 6th in the sport having joined back in season 2. The Dutchman has also had success in GTs throughout his career, racking up numerous titles in various categories, as well as winning the LMP2 endurance trophy in the World Endurance Championship in 2021. Robin’s results are very impressive, too, coming fourth back in 2019 and 5th last season. In ‘22, Frijns will surely remain towards the front, but with the Top three advancing further up the road each season, Robin may fall behind.
My Prediction - seventh
The other Envision car will be driven by Nick Cassidy, who enters his second year with the team and in Formula E. Cassidy was born in New Zealand and despite his brilliant talent, never quite made it in Europe despite impressing consistently. Instead, Cassidy took to Japan, where he conquered the nation, winning Japanese F3, Super GT and Super Formula. In 2021, Cassidy joined Envision Virgin’s Formula E team, struggling at first before getting two poles and two podiums on his way to 15th, which sounds like a bad result, despite being 23 points off of the eventual champion, de Vries. In 2022, the pack will be a bit more spread, but with a very pacey midfield, it’s not going to be easy for Cassidy.
My Prediction - 13th
For the last three years, the Andretti team has been racing under the BMW name but due to Beemer’s exit from Formula E they have reverted back to the Andretti brand, but with a bright red livery due to title sponsor Avalanche. BMW will, however, continue to be the team’s power unit supplier so as to not abandon the team. While Andretti aren’t necessarily European giants, they’re a huge name in America, where their IndyCar setup is consistently leading the pack. Team Principal Roger Griffiths has been with Andretti since the dawn of Formula E back in 2014, which seems to be the case with most team bosses. Andretti are always in the midfield, and sometimes venture up to the top step of the podium, helping Jake Dennis to two race wins last season alone. With rookie Oliver Askew joining their lineup for ‘22, Andretti will hope to maintain their consistent results.
Jake Dennis was very impressive in his rookie year last season, achieving two race wins on his way to third overall. Having started off the season poorly, Dennis clawed it back, dominating in Valencia as well as taking victory at his home E-Prix in London. Dennis has never had the chance to shine due to his lack of funding, resorting to limited appearances in various GT series. BMW finally gave him that chance to shine in ‘21, and shine he did. As I’ve mentioned numerous times, the midfield will be very tight in 2022 and Dennis will have to perform to keep his head afloat.
My Prediction - ninth
The other Envision car will be piloted by debutant American Oliver Askew, who until now had been trying to make a name for himself in IndyCar. Askew was very impressive in the Road to Indy but was sub-par when he finally got his chance for McLaren SP in IndyCar’s 2020 season, placing 19th with a frontrunning team. This was a massive hit for Askew, who only competed in five IndyCar events in 2021 for three different teams with a best result of ninth in Laguna Seca. In 2022, the 25 year old makes the switch to Europe for the first time in his career, racing for Andretti in their Formula E setup, where he’ll be thrown in at the deep end; right into the tightly packed midfield where it will be far from easy.
My Prediction - 14th
ROKiT Venturi Racing
Venturi racing are a very interesting team who have operated since Season 1 out of the world-famous Monaco. They usually compete towards the back of the pack but since switching from a factory team to customers in 2019, they’ve made great strides with their performance. 2021 was a great year for Venturi, with long time driver Edoardo Mortara placing second at the end of the season. While this was impressive, they were let down by their other driver Norman Nato’s 18th place finish overall, coming seventh despite at some points in the season having one of the best cars on the grid. Mortara stays for his fifth season in ‘22 and is joined by Lucas di Grassi, who joined the team following Audi, his former team, exiting the sport at the end of last season. The team is led by Team Principal Jerome D’Ambrosio, as well as CEO Susie Wolff, who was formerly the Team Principal.
Edoardo Mortara has become a solid driver in the Formula E paddock, achieving solid midfield results in comparison to the poor pace of the Venturi. The car suddenly was able to compete for wins consistently in 2021 and Mortara stepped up his pace accordingly with an amazing result of second in the championship. Mortara has a history in GTs, competing mainly in DTM, as well as winning the Macau GT Cup a mind-boggling three times! On top of that he took another two Macau Grand Prix wins back in his junior career days. This just demonstrates his cracking pace on street circuits, which is a great quality to have in Formula E. With a new teammate and the top three advancing further forward, Mortara might fall back just a bit.
My Prediction - tenth
His previously mentioned new teammate is none other than Lucas di Grassi, who moves to the team in ‘22 after Audi’s exit from FE, the team who he’d been with since Season 1. Di Grassi is well known for his huge involvement in various aspects of motorsport off track, as well as his brilliance on track. In Formula E alone, Lucas has achieved more than most, winning the championship of Season 3 and coming close to several others with a worst result of seventh which he got last season. Having reached the heights of Formula 1 back in 2010, di Grassi is most certainly a force to be reckoned with success in various series and in 2022 at a new team, he will almost definitely maintain his presence at the front of the field.
My Prediction - eighth
TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team
The Porsche team has been a bit of a surprise in Formula E due to them not reaching the expectations of lots of fans. The team entered in the same season as Mercedes and have achieved half of what their German compatriots have, placing eighth in both Season 6 & 7 while Mercedes have been third and first. Nevertheless Porsche have been very impressive at times despite not yet winning a race, after a technical infringement disqualified Wehrlein from first at Puebla. Porsche are in the very tight midfield fight from the mid to rear of the grid, where the cars will all be very close in performance. The team will run its all-German lineup of Pascal Wehrlein and Andre Lotterer for the second season, with team principal Amiel Lindesey still at the helm, trying to push Porsche further up the field.
Andre Lotterer is very well known for his good performances in several motorsport series all over the world. The German has won Super GT twice as well as the first ever World Endurance Championship and the 24 hours of Le Mans three times. The seasoned veteran has lots of experience in Formula E, with 2022 being his fifth season, having spent two seasons at Techeetah before being replaced by Da Costa. Lotterer was eighth in his first three seasons before a very poor 2021 saw him finish 17th, not racking up many actual points but the most penalty points on the grid, getting involved in multiple incidents. Having turned 40 in November last year, Andre’s days in Formula E may be numbered and due to his performances last season, I don’t expect much from him this season either.
My Prediction - 17th
In the other Porsche car is Pascal Wehrlein, a name lots of fans may remember from his two seasons in Formula 1 in 2016 and 2017. The 27 year old was previously the youngest ever DTM champion when he won the series back in 2015 aged 21 before his two year stint on the F1 grid where he was at one point in with a shout of a seat at Mercedes, the team he was a junior driver for. Following his fallout from F1, Wehrlein returned to DTM for a season before making the switch to FE ahead of the 2018-19 season with Mahindra racing, who he did another half season with the next season. Following Neel Jani’s exit from Porsche’s FE programme, Wehrlein moved to fill the gap going into 2021, where he had a solid season. He has proved he can perform well in the midfield and on some days can go up ahead and fight for wins and podiums.
My prediction - 11th
Mahindra have been in Formula E since its inception and were previously one of the leading teams, but have fallen back in recent years. From Season 2 to 4, they finished fifth, third, and fourth respectively, but have finished a lowly ninth in the past two seasons. The Indian team is led by CEO Dilbagh Gill who has heaps of experience in technology and has been working for Mahindra since it was formed in 2011. With Oliver Rowland joining the team in 2022, Mahindra should be able to be consistently in and around the points with Alexander Sims staying for his second year with the team.
Oliver Rowland is a great acquisition by Mahindra due to his routinely finding himself at the front of the field. Rowland enters his fourth full season of Formula E in 2022, having previously raced for Nissan e.dams from Season 5 to 7. In 2020, the Barnsley-born 29 year old even took a race win on his way to fifth in the championship, just being pipped to fourth by teammate Buemi by one point. Now at a new team, Ollie can really establish himself as a leader at Mahindra and can hope to improve both his and their results.
My Prediction - 12th
The other Mahindra seat is occupied by British driver Alexander Sims. Sims is a driver with a history of GT driving, and was a BMW factory driver before being called up to their Formula E team in Season 5. The 33 year old remained at Andretti for one more year before a switch to Mahindra last season, where it wasn’t exactly a baptism of fire, finishing 19th in comparison to his 13th place finish in his two years at BMW. Sims kept his seat for 2022 despite being beaten in the championship by teammate Alex Lynn but he doesn’t seem totally settled at his new team and the team don’t seem to be able to get themselves to the heights they used to reach and so he may struggle.
My Prediction - 18th
Nissan have previously been one of the best teams on the grid, with three Teams’ championships from Seasons 1-3 when they were powered by Renault. At the start of Gen2, the French team switched to Nissan from Renault, having a complete brand overhaul, but still keeping their good results, at least at first. In their first two years with Nissan they placed fourth and second respectively, but a sudden drop off in 2021 came as a big shock to many, finishing tenth in the Teams’ Championship. Due to the car homologation I don’t see e.dams improving their performance too much and may find themselves at the back of the midfield once again, although the signing of Maximillian Gunther may make a difference in ‘22.
Sebastien Buemi has been with the team since their first season back in 2014, and has stayed with them to this day, winning the title in Season 2, and losing the Season 1 title by one point. Alongside his Formula E success, Buemi has raced in 55 F1 grand prix for Torro Rosso, as well as three consecutive Le Mans wins from 2018-2020. Until 2021, Buemi had a lowest ever championship finish of fourth but plummeted down the order last season with an awful finish of 21st. The Swissman finished in the points three times with a best result of fifth while his teammate Rowland finished 14th, 57 points ahead. As mentioned, Formula E is currently under homologation, which means teams can’t massively overhaul their car, which could leave Nissan and Buemi stuck in the mud, in a similar spot to last year.
My Prediction - 15th
In the other Nissan is Maximillian Gunther, a proven Formula E race winner. The 24 year-old was one of the first drivers to make the move directly from Formula 2 to Formula E instead of pushing for a seat in F1, and it wasn’t necessarily a bad call. Gunther joined FE in 2019 with backmarkers GEOX Dragon before moving to the midfield BMW team where he gained three wins in his two years, finishing ninth and 16th respectively. For 2022 Gunther has decided to move to the e.dams team to partner Buemi at the sleeping giants of Formula E. His first season, however, may be tough with a car that doesn’t seem to have any pace at all. 2022 is the final season of the current regulations but it may not be one to remember for Guenther.
My Prediction - 16th
Dragon Penske Autosport
Now as we head to the back of the pack, we have Dragon racing. This former IndyCar team has been in FE since Season 1. The American team were frontrunners in the initial two seasons of Formula E but have since fallen back and have struggled to get off of the back of the pack recently. Despite always having a very strong lineup, Dragon have rarely had the pace to be consistently in the points. In 2022, they’ll keep Sergio Sette Camara, the young Brazilian who debuted with the team in Formula E in the Berlin-half of the 2020 season. To partner him, it’s none other than Formula 1 driver Antonio Giovinazzi, but this may not be enough to propel Dragon back up the grid.
Piloting the #7 Dragon is hotshot Brazilian Sergio Sette Camara. He has previously been a frontrunner in Formula 2 but following his exit from the F1 feeder series, the 23 year-old moved to the EV series. Camara scored points just twice in 2021 while teammate Nico Muller wrestled his Dragon car onto the podium at the end of a manic Valencia E-Prix. In 2022, I think it may just be more of the same for Sette Camara.
My Prediction - 21st
In the other Dragon car is a very interesting appointment. Driving for Dragon Penske in 2022 will be Antonio Giovinazzi, former F1 driver from 2019-2021, racing in 60 grand prix for Alfa Romeo Racing. After his third year with the team, the Italian was dropped by Alfa for Chinese rookie Guanyu Zhou who will make the step up from F2 to F1 in 2022. Not long after he was announced to leave, he announced he was making the switch to Formula E but it is not exactly the type of team we thought we’d see him at. Despite Giovinazzi’s bundles of talent, it might not be the brilliant rookie season that both himself and fans may be expecting.
My Prediction - 19th
NIO 333 FE Team
Finally we have NIO 333, who have played the role of backmarkers for the past few years. The team formerly provided Nelson Piquet Jr. with a title winning car all the way back in Season 1, but have since dropped off to the point where they scored zero points in the ‘19-20 season. In 2021, they achieved six points scores, finishing 12th out of 12 teams in the Teams’ championship. Oliver Turvey remains at the team for an eighth season, still remaining loyal to the team he joined in Season 1 and has stayed committed to throughout all of the tough years they’ve gone through. Turvey will be partnered by another Brit, Dan Ticktum, a very well known driver amongst motorsport fans, but not exactly for the right reasons. After he was told he would not be getting an F1 seat in 2022, Ticktum finished up his last F2 season and will now compete for backmarkers Nio 333.
Oliver Turvey is a very interesting character who was the first ever Cambridge Full Blue in motorsport as well as keeping his role as McLaren test driver since 2009. One thing to note about Turvey is that he is very committed to whatever he is doing, hence him remaining with Nio despite their very poor performance. 2022 will almost definitely be more of the same for Nio and Turvey, but he may have some good performances throughout the season.
My Prediction - 20th
In the other seat is Dan Ticktum, who’s picked up a lot of criticism for his antics on and off track throughout his junior career. Nevertheless, he has proved time and time again that he has buckets and buckets of pace, but going into Formula E as the youngest driver on the grid with the worst team on the grid will be very tough for Ticktum, easily the hardest year of his career. Fingers crossed, though, his radio-gold will continue on in FE.
My Prediction - 22nd
My Full Predictions
#13 Antonio Felix da Costa, Techeetah
#5 Stoffel Vandoorne, Mercedes
#17 Nyck De Vries, Mercedes
#9 Mitch Evans, Jaguar
#25 Jean-Eric Vergne, Techeetah
#10 Sam Bird, Jaguar
#4 Robin Frijns, Envision
#11 Lucas Di Grassi, Venturi
#27 Jake Dennis, Andretti
#48 Edoardo Mortara, Venturi
#94 Pascal Wehrlein, Porsche
#30 Oliver Rowland, Mahindra
#37 Nick Cassidy, Envision
#28 Oliver Askew, Andretti
#22 Sebastien Buemi, Nissan
#23 Max Gunther, Nissan
#36 Andre Lotterer, Porsche
#29 Alex Sims, Mahindra
#99 Antonio Giovinazzi, Dragon
#3 Oliver Turvey, Nio 333
#7 Sergio Sette Camara, Dragon
#33 Dan Ticktum, Nio 333
TAG HEUER Porsche
While these are my predictions, anything could happen knowing Formula E, maybe we’ll have another rollercoaster season or maybe someone will step up and dominate the championship, who knows! Let us know who you think will win the championship, I hope this article helped but from me, it’s bye for now.
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