Middle East News 247


31 January 2023, Dubai, United Arab Emirates – Jaguar TCS Racing achieve a double-points finish in the 2023 Diriyah E-Prix with Sam Bird securing the fastest lap of the race to cross the line fourth, narrowly missing out on a consecutive podium. Teammate Mitch Evans finished seventh – taking his third consecutive points finish of the season.

Mitch Evans lined up in second place on the front row of the grid after a successful qualifying session saw him make it through to the final of the Duels. The day started well in Diriyah with Mitch topping the Free Practice 3 times and qualifying group B before defeating Eduardo Mortara and René Rast in the knock-out stages. The Kiwi took the lead of the Diriyah E-Prix off the start line, getting in front of the McLaren of Jake Hughes after the first corner. The 28-year-old led the race for five laps before taking his ATTACK MODE and losing two places to the two McLarens. He dropped back down the pack after over consuming energy while leading the race. Running in sixth position, Mitch was up on energy on the cars ahead but Hughes’ ran out of energy in the final corner, blocking the Jaguar driver at the chequered flag allowing Buemi to overtake, leaving Mitch to take seventh.

Sam Bird narrowly missed out on the Duels and lined up in ninth position in the second Saudi night race. In the action-packed Diriyah E-Prix, Sam carved his way through the pack, showing his talent and experience in Formula E and making four impressive overtakes. With an energy rich Jaguar I-TYPE 6 and a great race strategy from the team, Sam had the potential to move further forward but a late safety car halted his progress. Sam battled with René Rast but narrowly missed out on the final podium place. He secured an additional point for taking the fastest lap of the E-Prix.

Sam Bird is fourth in the 2023 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship drivers’ standings, while Mitch Evans moves up to ninth.

Heading into the fourth round of the World Championship, Jaguar TCS Racing remain fifth in the 2023 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship teams’ standings.  

James Barclay, Jaguar TCS Racing Team Principal: “Firstly well done to Sam on a great weekend, he is back on the form we know he is capable of. A podium yesterday, fourth today and the fastest lap shows his talent but also the pace and efficiency of the Jaguar I-TYPE 6. Mitch demonstrated he is getting to grips with the Gen3 car with fantastic Practice and Qualifying sessions. Together we had high expectations for the race but leading the pack isn’t always the best place to be in Diriyah and towing the rest of the field around cost us energy which meant we had to drop back to try and regain. The result wasn’t a fair reflection of Mitch and our car’s pace and getting caught behind the McLaren running out of energy in the last two corners was the last of a series of unfortunate circumstances. As a team we learn on the harder days and today we have some things to improve on and homework to take away. We know we have strong pace, a fast race car and great efficiency and we aim to build on this for Hyderabad.”

Mitch Evans, Jaguar TCS Racing driver, #9: “I had a good start on both days and have had good pace all weekend but it still hasn’t worked out the way we wanted it to. It’s not flowed for me this weekend and I have often been in the wrong place at the wrong time. We’ll go away, look at the data and move onto the next race.”

Sam Bird, Jaguar TCS Racing driver, #10: “I’m incredibly happy with the pace of the car and that I was able to secure the fastest lap in Diriyah but there was a podium on offer today. We had great efficiency but after the safety car, the race became a flat-out sprint which makes it really challenging to overtake. We’ve learned a lot this weekend and now onto one of our home races in Hyderabad.”

The fourth round of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship takes place in Hyderabad, India for the first time on Saturday 11 February.

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