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Bird: Title is “Vergne’s to Lose”

Sam Bird says taking the title fight to New York is beyond his wildest expectations…

Photo: Formula E

Sam Bird believes that the momentum gained from his 17-point reduction of Jean-Eric Vergne’s ABB FIA Formula E Championship lead can inspire another unlikely tilt at the title.

Bird is using reigning champion Lucas di Grassi’s comeback from a large points deficit last season as motivation to be crowned the Season Four victor.

“This was a great opportunity to get points back and we took it and now we move on to New York with momentum,” Bird told e-racing365.

“The ball is still in JEV’s court enormously. He still has a race lead on me with two races to go so it is really his to lose but I’ll nick it off him if I can.”

“It’s been done before hasn’t it,” he said, referring to di Grassi snatching the title at last season’s final event in Montreal.

DS Virgin Racing made very little change from its Season Three package, a fact that Bird acknowledges gave him cause for concern ahead of the present campaign.

E-racing365 understands that the current DS Virgin Racing car is 14 kg over the minimum weight limit whereas some of its challengers add ballast to ensure they hit the minimum weight of 888 kg.

“It is all wildly above and beyond my expectation levels what we have done this season,” said Bird.

“I honestly thought P10 in the championship would be OK this year but my word it has been a completely different level to what we expected.”

DS Virgin Racing’s acting Team Principal Sylvain Filippi says that the team will head to New York City next month with a super aggressive strategy but admitted more fortune for a successful title tilt is needed.

“We scored the best we could and Sam as usual was impressive but Formula E is all about the sum of all the details – the car, the set-up, the systems and of course the driver.

“Our pit stop was not ideal but for sure we took the maximum again today.”

“We pretty much halved the deficit with two races to go so it is not impossible at all. We don’t need a miracle but a little bit of luck like we had today will be nice.

“We will go there super aggressive.”

Sam Smith is e-racing365's Formula E Editor. A 20-year veteran in motorsports media, including press officer roles in both the FIA Sportscar Championship and at Lola Group, Smith is a well-known face in the Formula E paddock, where he served as series editor for Motorsport.com from 2014-17. Contact Sam

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