Oliver Turvey took NIO back into the points paying top 10 during the ABB FIA Formula E Championship double-header finale in New York City over the weekend, providing some cheer for the team as the curtain fell on a challenging Season 5.
Team-mate Tom Dillmann led the way in perhaps the tightest qualifying session of the campaign ahead of round 12 on Saturday, 13th July, after securing P12 on the grid with Turvey an uncharacteristic P17.
Frustratingly for Dillmann, though, a multi-car tangle at Turn Six led to a partially blocked track and caused a concertina of cars which resulted in Dillmann’s NIO sustaining a broken steering arm, triggering luckless retirement.
Turvey, meanwhile, experienced better fortunes even though pegged back to 18th place after the lap two dramas. Moving through into 16th prior to a mid-race Safety Car period, positions then shuffled several times and Turvey climbed into 14th spot.
Although edged back to 15th place late on, everything changed during an incredibly dramatic final lap when a collision involving points leader Jean-Eric Vergne and Felipe Massa sparked a bigger incident. NIO’s Turvey duly picked his way through to bag his third points finish of the season, taking the chequered flag inside the top 10.
Oliver Turvey, Race Driver, NIO Formula E Team – Rd12 Quote:
“It was a crazy race! We had a good start, stayed out of trouble and managed the race well to make the most of any opportunities that came our way. As the race unfolded we managed to pick our way through the field and make up places. Ending in P10 was good as finishing in the points was the aim.”
Tom Dillmann, Race Driver, NIO Formula E Team – Rd12 Quote:
“We were strong all day until the race, after extracting everything we could from the car. Qualifying went well and I was happy with P12 but, unfortunately, things did not go so well at the start of the race and I got caught-up in the pile-up with nowhere to go. It was frustrating as collecting points was definitely a possibility.”
MORE POINTS OUT OF REACH IN SEASON FINALE
Turvey started the final E-Prix of the campaign on Sunday, 14th July, from P15 with Dillmann facing a tougher challenge from P20 on the grid following the imposition of a penalty which lost him three places.
British racer Turvey made a great launch at the start of round 13, challenging strongly into Turn One, but he was badly blocked by a spinning car at Turn Six and so ended the opening lap still in 15th position.
Climbing as high as 13th during the early running with some good overtaking, the championship finale then started to come undone and although Turvey slipped down the order he finished back in 14th after a final lap incident.
Dillmann experienced a chastening race and despite doing his best he spent the bulk of the 36 lap encounter in the lower order. Following the last lap tangle between Mitch Evans and Lucas Di Grassi, though, Dillmann finished in 15th place.
Oliver Turvey, Race Driver, NIO Formula E Team – Rd13 Quote:
“We did not get many laps in practice, but I was happy with my qualifying run which was my best lap of the weekend. I had a good start to the race and moved up a couple of positions, then had to fight to hold on. It was really tough to keep the pace and, in the end, I did start to struggle a bit with energy.
We ended up P14 which isn’t where we wanted to be, but I think we got the most out of it today. It’s been a pretty challenging season, which is tough after Season 4 where we had some strong races, but we have learnt a lot this year with the Gen 2 car. We do have work to do between now and the start of Season 6.”
Tom Dillmann, Race Driver, NIO Formula E Team – Rd13 Quote:
“We fought hard and picked up some places, and we maximised what we had with a good strategy and managed our energy well. There were no major interuptions during the race so we had no opportunities to capitalise on a better result, P15 was the best we could achieve.”
Gérry Hughes, Team Principal, NIO Formula E Team:
“New York City certainly provided some exciting racing this weekend and we were all very pleased to see Oliver finishing back in the points on Saturday. Unfortunately, the final E-Prix of the season wasn’t as fruitful for us but everyone at the NIO Formula E Team gave their all as always.
It’s clear Season 5 hasn’t been the season any of us wanted, but I want to take this opportunity to thank each and every member of the team for their continued hard work and, of course, to thank Oliver and Tom for their efforts in trying to maximise the package each weekend. The work for Season 6 begins now…”
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