Mercedes-EQ Formula E Team starts the new season with a one-two victory

Jan 28, 2022
Diriyah

Successful season-opener under the floodlights of Diriyah: Nyck de Vries and Stoffel Vandoorne finish as winner and runner-up in Round 1 of the 2021/22 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship

  • Diriyah saw the first use of a new qualifying format in which the drivers go head-to-head at the end of the group stage.
  • Stoffel clocked the third-fastest time in Group A, while Nyck set the fastest lap time in Group B. They then went on to win their respective quarter-final duels and met in the semi-final where Stoffel beat Nyck by four tenths of a second to advance to the final.
  • Nyck’s lap time from the semi-final earned him third place on the grid. Stoffel won the final against Jake Dennis (Andretti), thereby securing the sixth pole position of his Formula E career.
  • The E-Prix was interrupted by a safety car deployment 33 minutes before the scheduled end of the race as a result of an accident involving Oliver Rowland (Mahindra Racing). In line with the new regulations, the race duration was extended by 5:15 minutes.
  • Stoffel successfully defended his lead at the start and maintained this position until the safety car returned to the pits. Attempting to use Attack Mode for the second time, he missed the activation zone and dropped back to second behind Nyck.
  • Nyck made a strong start and immediately got past Dennis. After taking the lead from Stoffel, he activated his second Attack Mode and then defended his position to the finish.
  • It was Nyck’s third win in Formula E and his second in Diriyah. For the Mercedes-EQ Formula E Team, it was victory number five in the all-electric racing series and also the second at a season-opener hosted by Saudi Arabia.
  • The Mercedes-EQ Formula E Team (46 points) leads the team championship after the first race of the season ahead of Venturi Racing (18 points).
  • The second race of the 2021/22 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship will take place on Saturday at 17:03 GMT, also in Diriyah.

Driver

FP1

FP2

Qualifying

Race

Standings

#17

N. de Vries

P22

1:40.153

2 Laps

P18

1:09.906

22 Laps

P3 (Semi-Final)

1:08.813

P1

Grid: P3

FL: 1:09.611

P1

25 Points

#5

S. Vandoorne

 

P14

1:11.610

18 Laps

P16

1:09.740

20 Laps

P1 (Final)

1:08.6261

P2

Grid: P1

FL: 1:09.684

P2

21 Points

Nyck de Vries:

“That’s the sort of start to a season that I really like: a strong performance with a substantial haul of points. After my mistake yesterday in the first free practice, this result comes as a huge relief for me. We used FP2 to prepare ourselves optimally and went on to have a good qualifying. It’s a fantastic feeling to win the opening race here in Diriyah yet again – and what’s more with a one-two finish. It’s a great result for the team and I’m really happy for them. We’ve worked hard for this over the winter, but we also know that Formula E is a fiercely competitive championship. Tomorrow, we have to give it everything we’ve got again if we’re going to achieve a good result in the second race of the season.”

Stoffel Vandoorne:

“After qualifying on pole, I’m obviously a bit disappointed with second place, but I think it’s not bad when you have the luxury of feeling dissatisfied with second place. I led the race from the start, had everything under control and the car had strong pace today. Then, unfortunately, I missed one of the loops when activating my second attack mode and that gave the lead to Nyck. After that, we pushed each other and were able to pull away from the rest of the field. A one-two finish is a great result for the team. You can’t be disappointed after such a fantastic team result at the start of the season. And there’s another chance tomorrow. You must never let up in this series. It’s so tight – as soon as you let up just a little, someone else will step in to take advantage. Today’s outcome doesn’t automatically mean that tomorrow will be the same. That’s why we have to do our best on Saturday as well. For my part, I will be trying to go one better in the second race.”

Ian James, Team Principal:

“To say I’m pleased with this being the start to our season is an understatement. We were confident we had a good package going into the weekend but we know that we can take nothing for granted - especially given the pace of our competition. The team have been amazing at extracting the most out of the car and what we saw today is the result of a lot of hard work and dedication from an incredible group of women and men in the factory and trackside.

Both drivers have shown what they are capable of: Stoffel and Nyck both have topped the most important sessions of the day and in doing so, delivered some very valuable points with which to kickstart the season. Stoffel’s last lap in qualifying was magnificent and he was always in the running to win the race - with an unfortunate unsuccessful activation of Attack Mode making it more difficult. Nyck was excellent in executing his strategy and brought the car home in P1 - almost clinically accurate. Congratulations to both.

It’s a great feeling to have this race under the belt - especially with these highlights so early on in the season. Shortly after the podium celebrations, the team started to analyse today’s data and is focusing on the next challenge: tomorrow’s race. Because in the end, this is just the start of our season.”

Round 2 – Diriyah E-Prix

When to watch

The team is back on track for Round 2 of the 2021/22 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship tomorrow, Saturday 29 January 2022 (start time 17:03 GMT). Tune in at the following times to see the team in action:

Round 2

Session

Time (in GMT)

Practice 3

10:30 - 11:00

Qualifying

12:40 - 13:55

Race

17:03 - 18:00

Where to watch
Don’t miss any of the action this weekend, and follow the team on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Or, head here to find out how to watch all sessions live in your region.

Formula E - Mercedes-EQ Formula E Team, Diriyah E-Prix 2022. Stoffel Vandoorne
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