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ROSENQVIST: Zurich Debrief

Felix Rosenqvist tells e-racing365 about a dramatic first Zurich E-Prix on Sunday…

Photo: Formula E

It was another frustrating E-Prix for me and the Mahindra Racing team in Zurich last weekend.

First of all I just want to congratulate Formula E and the organizers because it was a stunning event with a very scenic and pleasant feel to it.

The landscape is amazing and I was able to hang out briefly with my teammate Nick [Heidfeld] at his house a few miles away which was really cool.

Our Mahindra M4Electro car was definitely good during most of the running last weekend but a decent amount of points was denied to me.

I would say chassis-wise we had the best feel of the car in last couple of races, since Rome probably. We were definitely there or thereabouts last weekend.

Starting in the first qualifying group seemed to be very bad on the Zurich circuit though.

Sam [Bird] made it through, which was quite impressive but Jean-Eric Vergne and I were the first guys out on track and it seemed to hurt us more for some reason.

I put in a pretty good lap but somehow lost six-tenths to the pole time set by Mitch Evans and JEV lost a second.

So, we seemed to suffer a lot from that timing aspect, but still P10 was not too bad I would say. It could always be much worse in this field, when it’s always so tight.

I made a position away from the line and then overtook [Daniel] Abt on the first lap which was a good job as he got involved in an incident with Piquet’s Jaguar.

I was running P8 for a very long time, trying to do my own thing and look after my energy a lot.

Then, with around nine laps to go JEV was approaching very fast behind me. I asked my team what to do and they said I should defend because he should be on the same or similar strategy.

But with the pace he was coming at I was like, ‘I don’t want to defend someone who’s clearly a second or two seconds quicker’, so I actually decided to let him go through.

I just coasted where I needed to coast, doing my own strategy and he was coming from quite far and then somehow, he didn’t seem to understand that I wanted to let him go.

I thought, ‘OK he’s not committing to go side by side now’, so then I went back to attacking the corner and just as I turned in he dived through at the last moment.

He was facing my side completely and I had to do something to try not hit him. So, I hit the wall and he didn’t hit anything which was slightly unfair, given I tried to let him through.

I think hose kind of things can happen when you have coasting involved and misunderstandings can sometimes happen.

Anyway, that he didn’t get a penalty is quite strange, because If I would have just turned, probably I would have got a penalty and we would have both crashed as well.

Photo: Formula E

I spoke to him at the media pen when everyone had left, he said sorry which is OK and I respect he did that, but it doesn’t really change anything now. It was just unfortunate and no real malice involved, in fact quite the opposite.

So I got out of the wall and had to box early and there was just nothing to go for, I was just running around, trying not to get lapped by Lucas [di Grassi], spending quite a lot of energy to do so.

It was a sad end to quite a promising day. Even starting P10 we had a pretty good chance to finish on the podium maybe with all the penalties people got.

I was pleased for Nick as he got good points at his ‘home’ race.

Now, as we head to New York City, we’ve made a good set-up with the car, we’re very competitive, performance wise so we can still grab another win for sure.

I’m expecting to be up there in New York, like we were last year and just try to have a clean weekend because there have been different things going on for the last couple of races, all kinds of problems have happened over the last five weekends.

So, we will just try to have a good one and finish on the podium to get Mahindra back to where they belong.

If we can end the season with smiles on our faces then we can recapture some of that feel-good factor we had earlier in the year.

Catch you after New York next month.

A two-time Macau GP winner, Felix Rosenqvist drives for Mahindra Racing in the FIA Formula E Championship.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Chris

    June 18, 2018 at 4:57 am

    Hopefully New York can set the tone for a really competitive title fight in season 5.

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