• Eighth place for Gary Paffett, DNF for Stoffel Vandoorne
  • Gary Paffett: "To finish in the points from 17th on the grid is fantastic!"
  • Stoffel Vandoorne: "Shame, as points were a definite possibility today."
  • Ulrich Fritz: "Gary did a fantastic job."

Paris, 27th April 2019 – The race day in Paris began as it had ended in Rome: With a strong performance from an HWA RACELAB driver. Last time out it was Stoffel Vandoorne who presented the team with its first podium finish. This time, Gary Paffett demonstrated his driving skills early in the morning. The DTM champion coped admirably with the wet track in the first free practice session, setting the fourth-fastest time of the whole field.

The rain was followed by sunshine, although the temperatures of around 12 degrees remained below average for the time of year. Teams and drivers were faced with the challenge of reacting to the new weather conditions - a challenge that HWA RACELAB mastered. However, both Gary and Stoffel made small driving errors in qualifying on the 1.93-kilometre circuit around Les Invalides. As a result, they had to settle for 17th and 19th place on the grid.

Gary and Stoffel drove a focussed race from the start, avoiding any risky manoeuvres. Track conditions then changed dramatically about halfway through the race: A heavy shower caused much standing water on the track. The result was a collision on the extremely slippery surface, with Stoffel unfortunately involved. He was consequently forced to retire from the race.

The E-Prix remained chaotic, with a host of spins, collisions and retirements. Gary showed all his experience, holding his nerve to gain position after position. He had reached ninth place by the time the safety car made an appearance. The race had only just re-started when there was another collision and yet another retirement. This put Gary eighth, a position he held on to superbly to finish in the points for the second time this season.

Quotes on the race

Stoffel Vandoorne (27, Belgium, car number 5), DNF
"It was a tough race today. The conditions were really tricky. The track was dry at first and the pace felt good. However, it was difficult to overtake. Then the weather changed suddenly. There were several collisions on the wet track. Unfortunately, I was hit from behind and my race was over. It is a real shame, as points were a definite possibility today."

Gary Paffett (38, England, car number 17), 8th place
"What a race! After qualifying, I was disappointed at first. To finish in the points from 17th on the grid is fantastic! I stayed clear of all the problems and the pace was very good. The car behaved superbly, even on the wet track. It was a tough battle, but a fun one. I am pleased for the whole team that we have picked up points again."

Ulrich Fritz, Team Principal HWA RACELAB
"As expected today was a complicated race, with the different conditions and, above all, the heavy rain. Unfortunately, Stoffel was involved in a collision and was unable to finish the race. Gary did a fantastic job. He fought his way through from the back of the field and was rewarded with his second points finish of the season. We are really pleased with that. It shows the pace we had this weekend. I would like to thank the whole team, which worked really hard again."

The next round of the 2018/19 ABB FIA Formula E Championship is the Monaco E-Prix on 11th May 2019.