Formula E

Pascal Wehrlein: ‘Still things to work on’ despite ‘super’ start to the season

3 Mins read
Credit: TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team

Pascal Wehrlein enters round fourth of the 2022/23 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship as the current Championship leader, after winning both races at the Diriyah double-header. Due to having won both races, Wehrlein can match the record for most consecutive victories in the all-electric series, should he win the inaugural Hyderabad E-Prix.

The German driver was immense in Saudi Arabia, with him having fought his way through the points places with ease in both races, thanks to superb energy management. His overall performance at the recent double-header has resulted in “so much positive energy” amongst the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team; however, Wehrlein knows that there are “still things we need to work on”.

“Super,” the German replied in response to what it’s like leading the standings.

“It was incredibly good to feel so much positive energy in the team after the two wins in Diriyah. Everyone has put a lot of commitment, heart and soul into this project, and this fantastic start to the season makes us all proud. Of course, there are still things we need to work on. We’re not the strongest in qualifying yet.

“Still, we’ve managed to put ourselves in a position where we can drive to the very front of the field. The car is still new to us and we’re getting better acquainted with it every weekend. We’ve done our homework for now, but just because we’ve won doesn’t mean we can take our foot off the throttle.”

Having also claimed second at the season opener in Mexico City has given Wehrlein some confidence, given that Porsche’s Gen3 powertrain has performed incredibly well at both venues so far this season. With this in mind, the German is “optimistic” that the car will continue to perform at each circuit this season, with this weekend’s trip to India hopefully going to be a successful one.

“First of all, it was crucial for us to put in a similarly strong performance on two completely different tracks. We’ve already done quite well in Mexico in the past, and the fact that we were able to confirm this in Diriyah is a huge relief for the team. That makes us optimistic for the future.

“Of course, we still have to find the optimum setup on every track, but the fact that our car ran so well in the first few races is sensational. I’m really looking forward to Hyderabad. I’ve never been to India. We’ll work hard to be successful there, as well.” 

100th race “fills me with pride” – António Félix da Costa

For Wehrlein’s team-mate António Félix da Costa, this weekend’s trip to India is an incredibly special one, with it set to be the former Champion’s one-hundredth race in the all-electric series. The Portuguese driver has been around since day one and has simply missed some races over the years due to other commitments, hence why this weekend is his turn to become a Formula E centurion.

Da Costa is hoping that his strong record at new venues will continue this weekend, to ensure that he can celebrate his milestone in style.

“100 races in Formula E – that’s really crazy. They were very exciting years with a total of seven victories, sixteen podium finishes, eight poles and one championship title. That fills me with pride. I love Formula E and was there at the very first race. Last year we raced in Jakarta for the first time and I started from the front row. Maybe that’s a good omen. Either way, Hyderabad will be a very special weekend for me.”

Da Costa’s season hasn’t started in emphatic fashion quite yet, nor has his relationship with Porsche, having finished seventh, eighteenth and eleventh at the first three races of the Gen3 era. His team “learned a lot” at the first two venues of the season giving him hope that things will improve, with the veteran targeting “success” this weekend.

“We learned a lot in Mexico and Diriyah. I’m working very hard with my engineers to understand what steps we need to take next to ensure success in Hyderabad. India is a new country for me. I don’t think we should limit ourselves to just getting people excited about motor racing. We should also be raising awareness for sustainability and values like inclusion and diversity among the people who come to the racetrack.”

Credit: TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team
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