Formula E "the most challenging thing I've done" - Lotterer

Three-time Le Mans 24 Hours winner Andre Lotterer has declared Formula E “the most challenging thing I have ever done” after a point-less debut.

Formula E "the most challenging thing I've done" - Lotterer
 Andre Lotterer, Techeetah
 Andre Lotterer, Techeetah, leadNicolas Prost, Renault e.Dams
 Andre Lotterer, Techeetah
 Andre Lotterer, Techeetah
 Andre Lotterer, Techeetah
 Andre Lotterer, Techeetah
 Andre Lotterer, Techeetah

Techeetah driver Lotterer came into trouble on the first lap of Saturday’s season opener, steering his car wide to avoid the Jaguar of Nelson Piquet Jr and getting stuck against the wall on the exit of the Turn 3/4 chicane.

He blocked the track and triggered a four-car traffic jam, which in turn caused the series’ first-ever red flag during a race.

Lotterer then picked up a five-second time penalty when his Techeetah team failed to remove a cooling device in time before the restart.

He subsequently earned a drive-through penalty for using the escape road at the Turn 3/4 chicane without coming to a complete stop before rejoining the circuit, and then had 22 seconds added to his race time in lieu of a drive-through penalty for a repeat of the same offence.

His first race finally ended in disqualification because he left the car in an “unsafe” mode in parc ferme, while in Sunday’s sequel he finished 13th despite running wide and slamming heavily into the wall on the exit of the final corner.

Lotterer believed the circumstances meant his weekend “looked harder than it was”, but he admitted it was a tough baptism.

“It’s quite difficult, it’s the most challenging thing I have done because there’s nothing like it,” he told Motorsport.com.

“When you do different racing categories on completely different cars but still on permanent race tracks it’s very close.

“This is completely different, there’s no margin for error, it’s very tricky to master the cars. It’s quite interesting.”

Lotterer said the opening-lap incident in race one was a result of being in “the wrong place at the wrong time”.

He added that radio communication problems, something that plagued several teams due to the high quantity of skyscrapers surrounding the circuit, contributed to him being “a bit lost” on energy management.

While teammate Jean-Eric Vergne scored a second and a fourth to end the weekend second in the championship, Lotterer is one of five drivers who failed to score.

However, he took encouragement from battling 2015/16 series champion Sebastien Buemi in the midfield in race two, even though he lost ground when the Renault e.dams driver passed him at Turn 1.

“It was a shame he passed me because I think we had better pace than them,” Lotterer said.

“In terms of race pace I think we were pretty good, the team told me I was on target all of the time, mostly.

“We need to see how we can improve performance. I need to qualify much better, that is obviously going to make my life easier.”

Additional reporting by Scott Mitchell

shares
comments
Mortara explains "stupid mistake" that cost him debut win

Previous article

Mortara explains "stupid mistake" that cost him debut win

Next article

Buemi says mystery problem caused Hong Kong “nightmare”

Buemi says mystery problem caused Hong Kong “nightmare”
Load comments
Why electric racing cars should be four-wheel drive Prime

Why electric racing cars should be four-wheel drive

OPINION: Circuit racing has traditionally favoured front- or rear-wheel-drive setups, eschewing the equal distribution of power. But for Formula E and other electric-powered series, our columnist believes it’s a perfect fit.

Formula E
Oct 13, 2021
How motorsport's most prominent power couple found joint success Prime

How motorsport's most prominent power couple found joint success

The Wolffs have carved their own paths in motorsport, leading their respective teams to success in Formula 1 and Formula E. But the two came together last month as their drivers finished first and second in the FE drivers' championship - a feat they are hugely proud of. In a rare joint interview, they reflect on a remarkable season

Formula E
Sep 21, 2021
The top 10 Formula E drivers of 2020-21 Prime

The top 10 Formula E drivers of 2020-21

OPINION: The 2021 Formula E campaign was one without a narrative for much of the season, with no single car or driver able to break away from the pack. That makes choosing a top 10 especially difficult, particularly as the qualifying format meant some worthy performers were unable to enjoy their day in the sun.

Formula E
Sep 19, 2021
How Mercedes and de Vries achieved Formula E glory the hard way Prime

How Mercedes and de Vries achieved Formula E glory the hard way

When Nyck de Vries dominated the first race of what would be the most controversial and unpredictable Formula E season to date, it looked as though Mercedes was in for a cakewalk. But as the campaign wore on, the path to a title double became increasingly rocky. Neither driver or team would be assured of the crown until the closing stages of the very final race on a weekend of struggle in Berlin.

Formula E
Sep 17, 2021
The Formula E 'loan' deal that will keep di Grassi winning Prime

The Formula E 'loan' deal that will keep di Grassi winning

OPINION: The departure of Audi from Formula E meant its long-time driver Lucas di Grassi would need to find a new berth to stay on the grid. His deal at Venturi Racing will ensure the championship's first-ever race winner will remain competitive into the final year of the current Gen2 ruleset - although it may not be a long-term fit

Formula E
Sep 15, 2021
The problems laid bare by Mercedes' impending Formula E departure Prime

The problems laid bare by Mercedes' impending Formula E departure

Mercedes' planned withdrawal from Formula E at the end of the 2022 season will contribute to the big hole left by fellow automotive manufacturers Audi and BMW on their departures. Although the team may stick around under a different guise, the exit of the now-reigning teams' champion underlines FE's current issues...

Formula E
Aug 18, 2021
The F1 dilemma facing Mercedes' new world champion Prime

The F1 dilemma facing Mercedes' new world champion

After clinching the Formula E title at the Berlin finale, Nyck de Vries is a driver in demand. Although Mercedes would love to keep a reigning champion at the team, the allure of a Williams F1 drive may be too much for de Vries to ignore should a potential deal come to pass

Formula E
Aug 17, 2021
How de Vries claimed Formula E title glory as Mercedes exit bombshell looms Prime

How de Vries claimed Formula E title glory as Mercedes exit bombshell looms

As Formula E lined up to complete its seventh season at Berlin's Tempelhof Airport, all eyes were on who would be its first official FIA world champion. Despite Nyck de Vries' title lead heading into the weekend looking all but secure, the Dutchman held on - and enjoyed a good dollop of fortune - to secure a championship double for Mercedes

Formula E
Aug 16, 2021