Nick Cassidy missed out on his maiden ABB FIA Formula E World Championship victory in race one of the New York City E-Prix on Saturday, although he refuses to lay any blame on Jean-Éric Vergne on the move that saw him fall from the lead to fourth place.
The Envision Virgin Racing driver had taken a superb pole position earlier in the day – his second of his rookie season – and he was able to convert that into the lead at the start. He was able to maintain his advantage through both of his uses of attack mode, but he was lower on energy compared to the chasing pack, which was led by Vergne.
The move from Vergne eventually came at the hairpin, but the Frenchman ran the New Zealander wide, which not only meant he fell behind the two-time champion but also Maximilian Günther and Lucas di Grassi. However, although feeling the move from Vergne was a little bit over the top, he felt it was just a part of racing.
“I think we did a good job today,” said Cassidy. “At the start of the race I felt very comfortable, under control. The full course yellow didn’t fall my way, though – it was when I had my Attack Mode so I couldn’t extend the gap I had and lost time, which I think is ultimately what cost me.
“I was down a little bit on energy to JEV (Vergne) so I knew that he would attack me somewhere and there was a high chance it would happen at turn 10. He lunged me and, unfortunately, he overshot a bit and ran wide, which obviously left me out to dry.
“A little bit over the top, but it’s one of those things – that’s racing.”
Team-mate Robin Frijns enjoyed a strong race on Saturday, with the Dutchman climbing up from eleventh on the grid to an excellent fifth place at the chequered flag.
The points ensured he moved level on points with championship leader Edoardo Mortara heading into Sunday’s second race around the Brooklyn Street Circuit.
“It’s been a good day, everything went pretty solid,” said Frijns. “We had a good qualifying, topping our group which is the best you can do.
“At the end of the day, it has been a good day for the team and Nick has been strong, he has been unlucky a few times so it is good that he has scored some solid points as well.”