Sam Bird battled hard throughout an action packed Beijing ePrix to take 7th place and score DS Virgin Racing their first points of the season.
In his latest blog post, the two time Formula E race winner reflects on what was a tricky first race for the team, but one lined with fantastic support from the fans!…
“Looking back to our first race of the season in Beijing, it was really one of mixed emotions…
While it was a great feeling to be back behind the wheel of the DS Virgin Racing car and racing around the iconic street circuits that Formula E is renowned for, we were disappointed that we were only able to come away from China with six points. I felt good and was going well in the opening stages before slipping back, so it was then a case of playing catch-up for the rest of the race.
I’d joked to a few people beforehand that if I’d won, I should rename the old Olympic Stadium as the ‘Sam Bird’s Nest’ but sadly it wasn’t to be!
There’s definitely plenty for us to work on as a team, but I can’t think of anywhere I’d rather be racing next than Putrajaya in Malaysia. Alongside my win in London, this was without question the highlight of last season. We were totally dominant during the race and in the end it was a pretty comfortable victory, so hopefully we can bounce back as a team and show people what we’re capable of.
Sam was one of three drivers and the only non-NEXTEV driver to be awarded a #FanBoost during the race, meaning he has already equalled his tally from last year…
While Beijing was frustrating on the track, it was great to spend some time out and about meeting the fans and wandering around the e-Village. The level of support that myself and the team experienced out there was nothing short of phenomenal and it was nice to see a couple of familiar faces in the crowd and be able to thank them personally for their amazing support.
I was delighted as well to win the Fanboost vote in Beijing. I knew I was there or thereabouts going into Saturday, but when I was told that I’d topped the leaderboard with 29%, it certainly came as a bit of a surprise! We only managed to pick up Fanboost once last year, so hopefully JEV and I can be in the mix a bit more this season.
I’m sure JEV will also be looking forward to Malaysia and showing everybody what he can do. He showed some really good pace in qualifying where he was second fastest and I’m sure that things will start to come together for him sooner rather than later.
We know that there will be a lot of focus on us in Malaysia after what we achieved last year, but we’re ready for the fight and are determined to give our season the kick-start it needs!”
Sam was the winner of last years Putrajaya, Malaysian ePrix and the team will of course be hoping to repeat that performance this year. They are one of two teams running a single gear powertrain and whilst this comes with a weight deficit requiring two motors; the team will have gathered a lot of useful data from last weekends race to help them utilise its potential. The pace certainly seemed to be there in the car during qualifying.
The Putrajaya ePrix takes place on Saturday 7th November.
#PutrajayaEPrix #FormulaE #DriveTheFuture