Racing in Riyadh
Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler kicks off Formula E Season 6 in fine style.
Lucas di Grassi and Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler were back on the podium in Saudi Arabia on the weekend, notching up the team’s 41st podium in 60 races.
25 November, 2019
The well oiled machine that is Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler clicked into gear, with Lucas di Grassi netting yet another podium
Although it wasn’t the dream start to a new racing season that every team wishes for, the opening round of the FIA Formula E’s sixth season nevertheless yielded results for Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler.
Although the first race on Friday was one of problems and disappointment, come Saturday and the well oiled machine that is Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler clicked into gear, with Lucas di Grassi netting yet another podium with a strong second place, while teammate, Daniel Abt, was also in the points after a spirited fightback drive.
Held at Diriyah, on the outskirts of the Saudi capital, Riyadh, the start of the eagerly awaited new season more than lived up to expectation, with close racing and a new air of competition with the increased field and new manufacturers keen to make their presence felt. The Brazilian showed his experience and race craft to avoid trouble out on the track, starting from third place on the grid to ultimately claim second position after the 45 minutes of racing and bringing his personal tally to 31 podiums, including 10 victories in the ell-electric category.
“Thank you to my guys in the pit lane. This trophy is a sweet reward for the hard work done by the whole team after yesterday’s difficult beginning,” says Lucas di Grassi. In the season opener on Friday, both di Grassi and his teammate, Daniel Abt, finished without any points. “This is the strength of our team – we never give up. We’re now going to analyse and evaluate everything, continue to improve and be even stronger in the next race. The battle for the championship is just starting for real.”
In sixth position, Daniel Abt scored valuable points for himself and the teams’ championship. The German had started the race from the 15th spot on the grid, initially made up some positions, but subsequently dropped to the end of the field due to a drive-through penalty. With the help of the safety car and several bold overtaking manoeuvres, he fought back into the points again.
“These points today were really hard-fought, but they felt good after a difficult start to the weekend,” says Daniel Abt. “We may not have scored a lot of points yet, but we know that we’ve got the performance and the car to be in contention for victories. Now we just need to put it all together.”
“That was a wonderfully crazy race – exactly the way we know and love Formula E. That makes going home with a trophy even sweeter,” says Team Principal Allan McNish. “I was especially impressed by how we fought back here in Riyadh after the disappointing first race on Friday. It
shows how determined and passionately our team works. Lucas showed an impeccable day today and I’m also very happy about Daniel’s points after a brilliant fightback.”
Audi’s customer team Envision Virgin Racing opened its account on the Friday with Briton, Sam Bird, winning the race in the Audi e-tron FE06, but was unable to net any additional points open the Saturday due to accidents during the race.
Season 6 of the Formula E championship will return to the race track next year, when the third race of the season will be held in Santiago de Chile on January 18.
Audi’s customer team Envision Virgin Racing opened its account on the Friday with Briton, Sam Bird, winning the race
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