Sam Bird arrives for the London E-Prix at the Exhibition Centre London (ExCeL) as the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship leader after his race two triumph in the New York City E-Prix, and he is eager to further extend his advantage at the top this weekend.
The Jaguar Racing driver has not raced in Formula E in his homeland since the 2015/16 season, where he took a seventh place in race one whilst racing for DS Virgin Racing before retiring from race two at the former venue of the event in Battersea.
Bird is one of only two drivers alongside Nyck de Vries to have won more than once in the 2020/21 season, but the British round of the championship is one he is particularly eager to impress in, especially when it’s the first home event for his team for seventeen years.
“It’s been over five years since I’ve raced on British soil in Formula E,” said Bird. “The return to London can’t come soon enough.
“To race on the streets where you grew up and in front of your home crowd is an experience like no other. I also can’t forget this is the first time I’ll be racing as a Brit with Jaguar Racing – the iconic British manufacturer.
“We’re about to race for the first time in seventeen years for Jaguar on home soil and doing this during the weekend of our sixtieth E-Prix. I’m extremely proud to be a part of this historic moment and my attention is firmly on putting the Jaguar I-TYPE 5 in a podium position for the team and extending my lead in the drivers’ championship.”
“This weekend in London is incredibly important for the team” – Mitch Evans
Team-mate Mitch Evans will be looking to bounce back from the disappointment of New York last time out by returning to the front end of the field and scoring big points in Jaguar’s home event.
Evans was on course for a strong second place behind Bird in race two in New York but inexplicably ran wide and clipped the wall with just a handful of laps remaining, damaging his suspension and leaving him outside of the points at the chequered flag.
The New Zealander has been with Jaguar since they joined Formula E back in 2016, and he knows how important their first home E-Prix is for everyone involved in the team. And he will be looking to use the fact he is in group two for Qualifying for race one to his advantage by getting to the front of the pack.
“This weekend in London is incredibly important for the team,” said Evans. “Having been a part of Jaguar Racing since we joined the championship back in 2016, I know exactly what this means to everyone involved.
“Seventeen years have passed since the team last raced in the United Kingdom and I am determined to make this weekend a success on-track. I’ve dropped out of group one in qualifying and I’ll be using this to fuel my hunger to score points and podiums for the team.”