DS AUTOMOBILES In The Top Fıve Of The Teams’ Champıonshıp

The very first Tokyo E-Prix, round five of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship, was not a favourable one for DS Automobiles and PENSKE AUTOSPORT

The 2.5-kilometre Tokyo E-Prix circuit, running around the Tokyo Big Sight exhibition centre on the seafront, was far from an easy ride for the all-electric single-seaters and their drivers this weekend. In the first free practice session, Stoffel Vandoorne encountered battery problems, which were directly linked to the bumps on the circuit. The battery was changed again before the race, where the 2022 champion got underway from 18th on the grid, four places behind his team mate Jean-Eric Vergne. The scene was set for the duo of DS E-TENSE FE23 cars to make their way back up through the field.

Jean-Eric Vergne and Stoffel Vandoorne made progress throughout the first Tokyo E-Prix, using a strategy that enabled them to move towards the points-scoring zone over the 35 laps of the race. These tactics nearly paid off, with two-time champion Jean-Eric Vergne ending up in 11th place at the finish. Having tailed his team mate for most of the race, the closing stages were more delicate for Stoffel Vandoorne, who eventually crossed the chequered flag in 16th.

Although DS PENSKE did not add to its points tally in the Japanese capital, the objective is now firmly fixed on the Misano circuit in Italy, where races six and seven of the ABB Formula E World Championship Season 10 take place in a fortnight. On this more conventional track, the DS Automobiles and PENSKE AUTOSPORT drivers will be aiming for results higher up the overall order.

Eugenio Franzetti, DS Performance Director:

“While we still remain in the top five of the Formula E teams’ classification, we are not happy with our results from this first race in Japan. It was a complicated weekend, especially with battery-related problems that affected us from the first free practice session. This meant that we did not have enough time to test our cars properly on the completely new track, which is very different from the others with several bumps that affected us more than our rivals. I’m sure that we will learn a lot from this experience. Now it’s time to concentrate on the next races at Misano. The Italian circuit is a more conventional track, which is better suited to our cars.”

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Jean-Eric Vergne, 2018 and 2019 Formula E champion:

“It was a difficult weekend with no points for us, which is obviously disappointing. But it’s still a long season with several races ahead, so everything is possible. We continue to work hard but the weekend in Japan was difficult. Now we have to analyse everything quickly and see how we can improve for the future.”

Stoffel Vandoorne, 2022 Formula E champion:

“It was a complicated weekend right from the beginning, when we missed FP1 with a battery problem. It’s even more of a shame as we were on a new circuit. Those laps would have been very important for us to try and find the right pace. So we found ourselves a long way down the order throughout the entire weekend. But I don’t want to use that as an excuse. We simply weren’t good enough, with a lack of speed in qualifying. In the race, we didn’t make significant progress, and we just didn’t have the pace we hoped for. We were fighting the set-up, the tyres, the energy management: all of which made it very hard to make progress. Now we need to learn from all this.”

Key figures since DS Automobiles entered Formula E:

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