Mitch Evans Wins First Formula E Race for Panasonic Jaguar Racing in Rome
This weekend, Mitch Evans made history for Panasonic Jaguar Racing. He claimed the team’s first ever ABB FIA Formula E win in Rome. It is Jaguar’s first international motorsport victory since 1991.
14 April 2019, Rome, Italy
Mitch Evans made history for Panasonic Jaguar Racing, claiming the team’s first ever ABB FIA Formula E win in Rome. It is Jaguar’s first international motorsport victory since 1991.
During a qualifying session plagued with intermittent rain showers, an impressive performance from Mitch saw the Kiwi driver clinch P2 from Super Pole. Teammate Alex claimed a ninth place qualifying, before being penalised for exceeding the maximum power limit and started at P21.
An early collision at turn 17/18 caused a pile up of several cars and brought out a red flag.
Mitch drove confidently at the restart. He managed to overtake Andre Lotterer with Attack Mode at turn 11 for the lead of the race. Despite Lotterer activating Attack More a lap later, the Kiwi driver defended well and held onto his first win in the series.
The Panasonic Jaguar Racing team will now prepare for the Paris E-Prix on 27 April.
Mitch Evans clawed his way passed Andre Lotterer in a hard-fought duel on the streets of Rome. He earned his first victory in the ABB FIA Formula E Championship and a maiden win for Panasonic Jaguar Racing.
Evans stalked the back of Lotterer’s car in the opening phase of the race, with the DS TECHEETAH driver unable to pull a gap. With both teams and drivers evenly-matched on pace, it became a tactical battle about when to deploy ATTACK MODE.
It was Evans who blinked first. He activated ATTACK MODE just after the halfway mark. Despite losing some time moving off the racing line, Evans stayed ahead of Stoffel Vandoorne in third and quickly roped Lotterer back in.
Lotterer chose not to mirror Evans and ran an alternate strategy. He held off on using the higher power mode and kept the Jaguar behind. His intention was to reap the rewards later in the race and use track position to his advantage.
However, Evans had other ideas and made a lunge with only seconds to spare with ATTACK MODE running out. Staying in his slipstream with the shining LED lights on the halo, Evans squeezed by Lotterer with a bold move up the inside of Turn 11.
With the lead changing hands, Lotterer used ATTACK MODE twice on the bounce in a bid to counteract the advance of Evans. But despite his best efforts, he couldn’t get close enough and had to once again settle for second place.
Managing and closely monitoring his energy to the chequered flag, Evans punched the air as he crossed the finish-line – adding to the list of consecutive different winners so far this season and taking the tally to seven.
Vandoorne hung on to the coat-tails of the top-two and rounded-out the podium places, before coming to a halt on the cool down lap. The result marks the first podium for the Belgian in his rookie season and the first for HWA RACELAB in Formula E.
Robin Frijns progressed through the field to fourth ahead of Sebastien Buemi. Buemi picked-up an extra point for fastest lap with his Nissan e.dams team-mate Oliver Rowland. Rowland was a place further back, in front of Lucas di Grassi in seventh.
Four points for Jerome D’Ambrosio in eighth was enough to vault him above Antonio Felix da Costa.He returned to the top of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship standings with the top-nine drivers covered by a mere 13 points.
Reigning champion Jean-Eric Vergne couldn’t replicate his form from Sanya. He failed to score points after being caught-up in the first lap melee with Jose Maria Lopez and Gary Paffett. Eventually it brought out the red flag. Vergne was later penalized for overtaking Da Costa under Full Course Yellow. This dropped him further down the order.