• 16th place for Gary Paffett, 18th for Stoffel Vandoorne
  • Gary Paffett: "We gathered more data and will continue our race to catch up."
  • Stoffel Vandoorne: "We came through a few tough hours today."
  • Ulrich Fritz: " The race was pretty chaotic and there was not much in there for us."

Mexico City, 16th February 2019 – Race day at the 2.1-kilometre Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez started promisingly for HWA RACELAB: Stoffel Vandoorne was seventh fastest in the first free practice, having held the fastest time for much of the session. However, the second practice session and qualifying for the CBMM Niobium Mexico City E-Prix did not work out so well for Paffett and Vandoorne, who ultimately had to settle for 16th (Paffett) and 19th (Vandoorne) on the grid.

Neither Paffett nor Vandoorne made perfect starts to the race, but they did make it through the turmoil of the early stages unscathed. The race was red flagged and suspended for over 20 minutes on lap five, following a crash involving Nelson Piquet. After a long interruption, race control decided that the race should still be run over its full distance. At the restart, Vandoorne was initially able to climb several positions from the back of the field. However, a time penalty for activating his Fanboost too early saw the Belgian drop back to 18th place. Gary Paffett, the British DTM champion in the HWA RACELAB team, came home just ahead of his team-mate in 16th place.

Quotes after the race

Gary Paffett (37, England, car number 17), 16th place
"There were good and bad aspects to the race. The result is obviously not what we had hoped for. It is not easy when you are starting from P16. However, we kept out of all the trouble and managed to finish the race. We gathered more data and will continue our race to catch up. We have learned more and made progress. Unfortunately, we came away from Mexico without any points, but there were definitely a few positives."

Stoffel Vandoorne (26, Belgium, car number 5), 18th place
"That was really a very difficult race. The car suffered a shutdown right at the start, which meant I dropped back nearly a full lap. Thanks to the red flag, I was able to fight my way back into the race. I had a good pace after the restart and overtook a few cars. I was back in business until we received a drive-through penalty, which ultimately ruined my race. However, we did make it to the finish. We came through a few tough hours today and must learn from that for the future."

Ulrich Fritz, Team Principal HWA RACELAB
"The weekend did not run as we had wished. The result, with both cars at the back of the field, is pretty disappointing to be honest. It all began with difficult sessions in free practice, which in turn compromised the rest of an action-packed race day. The race was pretty chaotic and there was not much in there for us. On the positive, we gained some more mileage, as both cars finished the race. Both drivers did a solid job and, generally speaking, had a good race pace. We can definitely build on this in the future."

The next round of the 2018/19 ABB FIA Formula E Championship is the Hong Kong E-Prix on 10th March 2019.