– Race report: London E-Prix, round 16 of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship.
– The TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team misses out on the title at the final race on the ExCeL Circuit.
– Pascal Wehrlein (GER) earns one point for tenth place in his Porsche 99X Electric.
– Persistent rain causes extreme conditions and two abandoned attempts to start.
At the London E-Prix, the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team wrapped up its most successful season to date after 16 races. With the Porsche 99X Electric and its drivers Pascal Wehrlein and António Félix da Costa (POR), the team from Weissach celebrated four victories in the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship.
Persistent rain in London saw the final race of season 9 get off to a slow start. Two attempts to start behind the safety car were abandoned for safety reasons. For the season finale, it was only after a 90-minute delay that the 22 drivers finally set off on the spectacular ExCeL Circuit in the Docklands of East London, which runs outside and inside an exhibition hall. Despite the difficult conditions, no major incidents occurred.
Finishing in tenth place, Pascal Wehrlein earned one point for the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team, which had travelled to London with chances of winning the Teams’ World Championship. This season, the German won both night races in Diriyah (Saudi Arabia) and a round in Jakarta (Indonesia) with the Porsche 99X Electric. His teammate António Félix da Costa, the winner of the Cape Town race in South Africa, finished on P16. In Saturday’s race, da Costa started from 17th on the grid, made up 15 positions in the most spectacular comeback drive of the season and took the flag in second place. However, he subsequently received an incomprehensible time penalty and was thus robbed of a well-deserved podium.
At the wheel of the Porsche 99X Electric fielded by the Porsche customer team Avalanche Andretti, Jake Dennis (GBR) secured the Drivers’ World Championship at his home race. Pascal Wehrlein concluded the season as fourth in the drivers’ standings, with António Félix da Costa in ninth. Avalanche Andretti’s second driver André Lotterer (GER) finished 18th. In the team standings, the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team concluded the season in fourth behind the new world champion Envision Racing, Jaguar and Avalanche Andretti.
Tackling the final race of the season in his Porsche 99X Electric from P10, Pascal Wehrlein gained one position, lost it again and took the flag in tenth. António Félix da Costa started from P20, and despite the lack of overtaking opportunities, made up four places to finish 16th.
Comments on the London E-Prix, race 16
Florian Modlinger, Director Factory Motorsport Formula E: « Thanks to the squad and the development team for their tremendous effort this season. We’d envisaged a different outcome today. There was no energy limit because of the weather conditions so the race was flat-out with very few chances to overtake. This made it extremely difficult to advance through the field from their grid positions. Still, António made up four places, with Pascal finishing in the same place as his starting position. Ultimately, this was a disappointing result for us. »
Pascal Wehrlein, Porsche works driver (#94): « We were strong in many of our races this season and topped the leaderboard for a long time. Then in the last races, we didn’t manage to match the good results from the beginning of the season and subsequently lost a lot of points. That’s disappointing, obviously. Still, we’ve grown significantly stronger overall compared to the last few years and that gives us hope. A huge thank you to the whole team for their hard work. »
António Félix da Costa, Porsche works driver (#13): « Again today, it was obvious that we need to keep working on our qualifying performance. That will be our big task in the off-season. We have a very competitive car in the races. Today’s extreme conditions made it very difficult to overtake. Nevertheless, we’re taking some positive insights home with us. I’m sure we’ll return stronger in the new season. »