Massa to race for DiCaprio's Formula E team

Paris - Former Ferrari ace Felipe Massa has signed a three-year deal to race Formula E starting in the 2018/19 season, his new Venturi team said on Tuesday.

"Today I am starting a new phase in my career, I just signed with Venturi GP team to race next season," the 37-year-old Brazilian said on Twitter.

Massa looked set to join Jaguar's E team before extending his Formula One contract with Williams to the end of 2017 when Valtteri Bottas joined Mercedes.

"The contract between Felipe Massa and Venturi Formula E Team is for three years," said Venturi, co-owned by Monaco real estate magnate Gildo Pastor and Hollywood actor Leonardo DiCaprio.

"For some years now, I’ve been clear about my interest in this innovative, forward-looking discipline," Massa said.

"I especially like the format of race meetings, the city-centre circuits and the contact with the fans," added  Massa, who begins testing next month.

"Gildo (Pastor) has always been a step ahead when it comes to high performance electricity vehicles."

Massa raced Formula One for 15 years and was runner up in the world championship in 2008.

In its third season, there are now 11 Formula E races - using fully electric cars - in cities such as New York, Hong Kong and Paris.

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