Heat was the major challenge facing competitors in round 4 of the ABB FIA Formula E world championship held in Sao Paulo

On the ABB FIA Formula E world championship’s second visit to Brazil, the heat caused headaches for engineers and drivers. The air was 35 degrees Celsius, the track was at over 50, so energy management and battery temperature were a real concern. The opening phase of the race was very strategic with plenty of overtaking and two appearances from the Safety Car also put paid to some pre-arranged plans.

The discipline’s only two-times world champion, Jean-Éric Vergne, again scored important points in seventh place, which keeps him at the front end of the pack in the standings. The Frenchman is currently fourth, although equal on points with the third placed driver. It’s worth noting that JEV is one of only four drivers to have scored points in all four opening rounds, thanks to good consistency, both from himself and from DS Automobiles.

Finishing just behind his team-mate, Stoffel Vandoorne is also racking up the scores, with three points finishes from four races. The 2022 world champion was obviously hoping for better than eighth place, given he started from the front row, but it just did not work out in Brazil.

The ABB FIA Formula E world championship is back in action in a fortnight’s time, on its first visit to Japan, with the race scheduled to run through the streets of Tokyo on Saturday 30 March.

Eugenio Franzetti, Directeur of DS Performance :

“We come away from this weekend with mixed feelings. We did well in free practice and our qualifying performance was excellent. Then in the Duels final, pole position escaped us by just two thousandths, while our other car was third. After that, it was a difficult race. We struggled to match the pace of some other competitors and in the end, JEV came home seventh and Stoffel eighth. That still means useful points for the championship, but not as many as we’d hoped for after qualifying. There’s a lot of work ahead of us and we will do all we can to do better in the next race in Tokyo.”

Jean-Éric Vergne, 2018 & 2019 Formula E champion :

“Let’s be honest, we’re disappointed. We had a really good qualifying to line up second and third on the grid, but in the race maybe our strategy decisions weren’t the best. Looking at the positives, we should be happy to see we are competitive in qualifying and that once again we scored points with both cars. The next race is only two weeks away and I hope we can fight back in Japan.”

Stoffel Vandoorne, 2022 Formula E world champion 2022 :

“There were two sides to today for the team, with a super qualifying followed by a rather more difficult race. Given our one-lap pace, we could have expected to do better than seventh or eighth. So naturally we are disappointed that we did not score more points. I think we have to analyse our race and I reckon we have a lot to learn from it, especially when it comes to strategy. We could have done a better job of getting better track position. Knowing that should make us stronger for the next round. On the positive side, we have proved to be very quick in qualifying every time. It’s encouraging for the future and it gives us confidence for the next race.”

Key figures since DS Automobiles entered Formula E:

  • 109 races
  • 4 championship titles
  • 16 victories
  • 48 podiums
  • 23 pole positions
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