Jaguar Scores First Podium in 2017-2018 Formula E Opener
Mitch Evans claims first career podium in Hong Kong; Jaguar matches 2016-2017 team point total in opening two races of season.
Panasonic Jaguar Racing opened their 2017-2018 Formula E campaign with a podium for the I-Type 2 in the season-opening doubleheader.
Returning New Zealander Mitch Evans scored that podium in the weekend’s second race. Evans crossed the finish line in fourth place but was promoted to third after race winner Daniel Abt’s disqualification. That gives Evans his best-ever finish in Formula E, which starts his campaign strongly.
Evans topped the timing sheet in Race 2’s first round of qualifying, which showed good pace from the revised Jaguar I-Type. However, the five-car super pole shootout found Evans unable to log a lap. Nevertheless, he ran a clean race from that third-row start with a clean pit stop.
In Race 1, new Panasonic Jaguar Racing driver Nelson Piquet Jr. narrowly missed a podium. His fourth-place finish, however, offered a sturdy base for the first Formula E champion. Piquet’s finish garnered Jaguar their first points of the season, which he had to earn with a charge from 10th place on the grid.
Neither racer put together points-scoring races in both of the weekend’s races. Evans and Piquet each finished 12th in Races 1 and 2, respectively. However, the strong Top 5 showings put them sixth and seventh in the driver’s championship standings.
The collective points from the two finishes also send Jaguar to fifth in the team’s championship. Those results already put them far ahead of the team’s pace last season. With 27 points in the opening two races, Evans and Piquet have already matched their 2016-2017 season total.
The I-Type 2 returns to action at the Marrakesh round in Morocco on January 13 for a single round. Jaguar will look to put last year’s disappointing Marrakesh finishes, 14th and 17th, behind them.