Formula E

Jaguar’s James Barclay Expecting An “exciting season” With Huge Step Into The Unknown

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Credit: Jaguar TCS Racing

This weekend marks the start of a new era of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship, with Season Nine of the all-electric series kicking-off in Mexico City, with Jaguar TCS Racing ready to “fight” for either title.

Anything could happen at this weekend’s season-opening Mexico City E-Prix, with technical issues having plagued several teams during pre-season. Jaguar were one of the teams to experience some issues; however, the outright pace of their Gen3 challenger, the I-TYPE 6, does look promising. Qualifying let the British team down in Season Eight, with Mitch Evans having performed wonders during the races to seal second in the Drivers’ Championship.

The team also claimed their highest total of points in the Constructors’ Championship last season, with Team Principal James Barclay revealing that this, plus the fact that Evans came so close to the title, has “given the team even more motivation”. For Jaguar and every team on the grid, the initial priority this weekend at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez is to simply finish the race, with the expectation being that many won’t given the countless technical issues some teams endured in pre-season.

It will create an “exciting season”, though, with so much being unknown heading into the new season. One thing that is for certain, is that Sam Bird‘s and Evans’ experience will be crucial if the Coventry-based outfit want a good year, with Barclay being aware that there is “so much to learn” about the plethora of changes taking place.

“We had a very positive year in 2022 with some real highlights but we did just miss out on the top spot. This has given the team even more motivation to be in a position to fight for the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship Team and Driver titles this season.

“With our experienced team, Mitch, Sam and the all-new Gen3 Jaguar I-TYPE 6, we’ve certainly got an exciting season ahead against world class opposition. With so much to learn about the new Gen3 cars, new race format and Hankook tyres, this first race in Mexico will be about trying to be as prepared as we can be and ready to adapt.”

“We know this track is a challenge” – Phil Charles

Technical Manager Phil Charles has warned that this weekend’s venue for the season opener is a “challenge”, with high temperatures usually present at the circuit. Interestingly, the temperature isn’t expected to be an issue this weekend, something which will likely delight the entire paddock.

The atmosphere, though, will certainly be electric, with the Mexican fans set to create a “really special” atmosphere once again, as they always do for whatever series is in town. Looking deeper into what can be expected this weekend at the first Gen3 race, Charles has predicted that everything will need to be “fully in sync” for a strong weekend, especially given that the tyres don’t get a significant opportunity to cool down around the circuit.

“It’s always a pleasure to be racing in Mexico’s capital city. The spectators are always on good form and the atmosphere in the stadium section is really special. We are also excited within the team to see the Gen3 cars in race action for the first time.

“Having said that, we know this track is a challenge; while ambient temperatures aren’t forecast as particularly high for this visit, the addition of the chicane on the back straight means the tyres don’t get much time to cool down around the lap. The final corner is also one of the trickiest high-speed corners we encounter through the season. So, setups, systems and drivers need to be fully in sync if you want to do well in Mexico City.” 

Credit: Jaguar TCS Racing
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