Oct 3 (Reuters) – Indian batsman Virat Kohli was announced as the newest celebrity team owner in the E1 World Championship on Tuesday, joining the likes of Rafa Nadal, Tom Brady, Didier Drogba and Sergio Perez in the world’s first all-electric powerboat series.
The UIM E1 World Championship is the latest entry into the environmentally responsible motor sports competition, joining Formula E and off road Extreme E, and is scheduled to begin racing next year in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Kohli, widely regarded as one of game’s best batsmen, and sports tech entrepreneur Adi K Mishra will be principals at the helm of “The Blue Rising” team in the competition which is the brainchild of Formula E and Extreme E founder Alejandro Agag.
“I want to inspire people to have a competitive spirit and to raise awareness about sustainability issues, something I am becoming more and more passionate about as we build a family,” Kohli, 34, said in a statement.
“I can’t wait to cheer for our male and female pilots racing for our team.”
Former Chelsea striker Drogba, seven-time NFL Super Bowl champion Brady, 22-time tennis Grand Slam champion Nadal and Formula One driver Sergio Perez were all previously named as team owners in the series.
Former India captain Kohli, who is preparing for the World Cup on home soil starting on Thursday, said he was looking forward to lining up against his fellow team owners once the competition begins.
“We’re going electric, we’re going flying over the water and we’re going to try to win it for The Blue Rising,” Kohli said.
The inaugural season will have stops in Venice, Monaco and Rotterdam with more venues to be announced later.
Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Ken Ferris