After all the action of Friday, the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship did it all again on Saturday for Round 3. Jehan Daruvala would find himself in uncharted territory in qualifying and the race whilst the Japanese outfit of Nissan would finally get off the starting blocks in the Teams’ Championship. Asian Motorsport reviews all the action from the second round of the Diriyah double-header.

By Seb Tirado

Free Practice 3

The only practice session of the race saw teams and drivers once again simulate and prepare for qualifying later in the day. Mitch Evans of Jaguar TCS Racing would go fastest of everyone with a 1:10:154. Jehan Daruvala would finish in his highest Free Practice position so far of 13th with a 1:10:964, ahead of both ERTs and Mahindras.

Qualifying

The group stages would see the two Nissan drivers Sacha Fenestraz and Oliver Rowland go fastest in Group A and B respectively. A late red flag in Group B would allow Jehan Daruvala to go into the Duels for the first time by finishing 4th in Group with a 1:10:904, his fastest lap time of the weekend. He would go on qualify 5th on the grid after being beaten by Rowland in the Quarter-Finals but still setting a faster time compared to the other eliminated drivers. Pole Position for the second race in Diriyah would ultimately go the way of Rowland, giving Nissan their first points of the season.

Rowland under the setting sun in Qualifying | Credit: Formula E

Diriyah E-Prix

The start of the second 2024 Diriyah E-Prix | Credit: Formula E

Rowland would get jumped by the Envision of Robin Frijns into the first corner and soon after by the Jaguar of Nick Cassidy. Now having to fight hard for points, Jehan Daruvala began to greatly focus on defending his position in the early stages of the race.

Whilst he was determinedly defending for a good portion of the race, he struggled to conserve energy compared to the other drivers around him and soon dropped back to the fringes of the points. An unfortunate lock-up into T18 would subsequently drop him to 13th before a brake failure approaching the same corner would force him to retire from the E-Prix on Lap 25.

Further ahead, Cassidy would go on to take a clean and calculated victory as well as the Fastest Lap. His old teammate Frijns would finish in 2nd and Rowland would finish a respectable 3rd. A 6th place finish for teammate Fenestraz would consolidate a grand haul of points for Nissan that lifted the Japanese team from 9th to 7th in the Teams’ Championship and close to their customer team of NEOM McLaren.

Cassidy would take his first win for Jaguar whilst Rowland would boost Nissan up the standings | Credit: Formula E

Formula E Drivers’ Championship Top 10

  1. Nick Cassidy (Jaguar TCS) – 57
  2. Pascal Wehrlein (TAG Heuer Porsche) – 38
  3. Jean-Éric Vergne (DS Penske) – 33
  4. Jake Dennis (Andretti) – 28
  5. Mitch Evans (Jaguar TCS) – 21
  6. Maximilian Günther (Maserati) – 20
  7. Robin Frijns (Envision) – 19
  8. Oliver Rowland (Nissan) – 18
  9. Sébastien Buemi (Envision) – 18
  10. Jake Hughes (NEOM McLaren) – 18

Formula E Teams’ Championship Top 5

  1. Jaguar TCS Racing – 78
  2. DS Penske – 47
  3. TAG Heuer Porsche – 38
  4. Andretti – 37
  5. Envision Racing – 37

With the cancellation of the round in Hyderabad, the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship continues on March 16th with a return to São Paulo, Brazil.

Header photo credit: Formula E

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