Last weekend, the first 2 rounds of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship took place in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia. ATRL’s Mees Drijgers takes a look at the team’s performances so far.
After five months, the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship is back! On Jan. 28 and 29, Rounds 1 and 2 were held on the streets of Diriyah, Saudi Arabia. This first weekend showed who the front running teams are and who needs to bring the pace in future rounds.
Mercedes EQ and ROKiT Venturi both came out on top this weekend, with all four drivers scoring a podium and only 1 point separating them at the top of the Team’s Championship at the moment. Mercedes EQ started strong, with Stoffel Vandoorne claiming the first pole position in the new qualifying format. De Vries and Vandoorne then claimed a 1-2 in the first race of the weekend. ROKiT Venturi driver Edoardo Mortara narrowly missed out on pole position but managed to win the race and shared the podium with teammate Lucas di Grassi after Race 2.
Andretti and Envision currently sit in 3rd and 4th in the Team’s Championship standings. Jake Dennis and rookie Oliver Askew both finished in the points during Race 1, with Dennis scoring his first podium of the season already. Envision’s Robin Frijns picked up second place during Race 2 after making contact in Race 1 and getting a drive-through penalty. His teammate Nick Cassidy picked up a P7 finish plus an extra point for the fastest lap but was unfortunate during the 2nd race after being unable to partake in qualifying.
Porsche, Jaguar, and DS Techeetah have their work cut out for them, with all teams showing strong pace in qualifying but struggling to convert that into consistent results during the races. Jaguar drivers Sam Bird and Mitch Evans had trouble during the second round of qualifying due to damage, which put them on the back foot for the second race. With DS Techeetah’s António Félix da Costa retiring in the opening laps of Race 1 and Jean-Éric Vergne’s 6th place as the highest finish for the team, they will need to come back stronger in Mexico to match last season’s results.
Mahindra started the new season off strong, with Oliver Rowland topping the timing sheets in the first two practice sessions. However, they seemed to lack pace throughout the races, with Oliver Rowland’s P8 finish scoring them their only points of the weekend. With track conditions most likely being different in Mexico, both Sims and Rowland will be trying to finish higher up the grid.
As it stands, Nissan, Dragon/Penske, and NIO 333 are the only teams that have not scored any points yet.
Though NIO 333 and Dragon/Penske seem to be continuing last year’s form, their four drivers nevertheless battled it out during both races.
The next round is in Mexico on Feb. 12, and with the first two races of the season completed, these teams are ready to focus on their championship fights entirely.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mees was introduced to the world of F1 by one of her friends in July 2020 and hasn’t missed a race weekend since. Her favourite drivers are Alex Albon, Lando Norris, and George Russell; outside of F1, she also actively supports Lawson, Vips, Piastri, Ilott, and Ticktum. She specialises in writing about F2, but is looking to specialise in FE and IndyCar as well, after starting to watch both series in 2022. After getting her Bachelor’s degree in English Language and Culture, she is currently getting MA degrees in Translation and English Literature & Culture. When she’s not watching motorsport, she’s either watching football matches (preferably Real Madrid), reading a book, or watching streams on Twitch.
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