On January 28th 2021, the external kick-off meeting of the PERFORMINGRAIL project was held on-line, as common in these difficult times of pandemic. Representatives from project partners met with Léa Paties from the EU Shift2Rail Joint Undertaking, who provided a presentation of the JU, financial and dissemination requirements, as well as their general recommendations and expectations from the project. University of Birmingham, project coordinator, provided an overview of project structure, objectives, management structure, work breakdown and overall plan. Then presentations by Work Package Leaders followed, providing specific milestones and technical deliverables. All project partners looked extremely motivated and thrilled to cooperate with the team, to deliver excellent project results and not disappoint expectations. At the time we are writing all the actions planned during the meeting have been already accomplished and the project is progressing smoothly according to its plan!