Posted 23 November, 2019 at 19:00
NIO 333 Formula E team achieved a “Top 10” finish after a superb drive by Oliver Turvey in the second round of the 2019/2020 ABB FIA Formula E championship at the Diriyah ePrix.
After showing promising pace during the opening day of the 2019/2020 season, NIO 333 FE team continued its solid performance in Saturday morning’s qualifying.
British driver Turvey was only seven-tenths off the “super-pole”, shows the progress team made during the race weekend. His teammate Ma Qing Hua continues his familiarization of the Gen 2 car and ranked 21st of 24 drivers in the ultra-tight qualifying session.
Turvey’s stellar performance continued in the race. Starting from 17th, the British star quickly made up a few positions after the first lap. As the race unfolds a number of competitors start to make mistakes, but the experience of Turvey’s kept everything under control and finds himself nearing the Top 10 while the race enters its final chapter. With bold overtake and the strategy choice on the use of “Attack Mode”, Turvey crossed the finish line in 8th place. However, due to energy over-consumption, Turvey’s 8th place finished was disqualified after the race.
Frustratingly for Ma, the story of Saturday could also have been a heroic one. The only Chinese driver on the grid drove an amazing race to be inside the points when the second safety car period was starting. However, due to a car issue in the final stage of the race, Ma could only finish the race in 19th position.
After a smooth opening day of the season, the team operated by Chinese Motorsport industry giant, Shanghai Lisheng Racing Co.LTD is finally able to transfer its potential into a solid result. Both drivers showed a huge step of improvement in the two-day event and were able to fight with other teams in the field. Although the result was a disappointment for the team, Saturday’s race showed great single-lap pace and good race pace.
After a promising Diriyah ePrix, the team turns its full focus onto the next round — the Santiago ePrix on the 2020/1/18.
Oliver Turvey, #3
“Yes, I know it is a good race. Obviously, today’s qualifying I thought I did a good lap again, but it’s a super tight competition. Started P17, we had a really clean race managed to overtake some people in the start, saved good energy. Because we had a good changing overnight, thanks our engineers and mechanics. Pace is much better today in the race. We were able to take opportunity in this quite chaotic race. I managed to cross the line P8. Unfortunately, due to some technical issues causing an over-consuming of 0.06kWh and we missed our team’s first points.”
Ma Qing Hua, #33
“First of all, I am really happy for the team, it is quite a smooth day. The only shame is the problem I encountered towards the end of the race result in the lose of positions towards the end. But it is just a start, we had really good pace from practice to qualifying and later on in the race. I am still trying to settle into the new Formula E car. I think there is still quite some room for improvement in our car.”
Vincent Wang, NIO 333 FE Team CEO
“The effort from the whole team was turned into some good performance today. We can see a step forward throughout this weekend, and also a huge improvement since Valencia (Pre-season testing), even though there are still a few issues. Pace wise we were able to match the front runners, as was shown by the small gap in qualifying. For the race, our strategy was to follow the leading pack as we know it will be our opportunity when incidents happen in front of us. We accept the penalty, we think it was the final half of the lap, we unfortunately overused the power in the heat of the battle. We are happy to see our improvement; this is only our start. As a newly formed operation, we are positive for the future, and we are full of optimism.”