Gary Paffett and the FIA Formula E grid headed to Bern, Switzerland last weekend for the penultimate race weekend of the 2018/19 season, where a puncture thwarted Gary’s race and challenge for points.
The two-time DTM champion found himself struggling at the 2.7-kilometre Bern city-centre track layout. In qualifying, HWA RACELAB and Gary were already struggling for pace and as a result, Gary had to settle for a 16th place starting position for the afternoon’s race.
When the Swiss E-Prix got underway, it wasn’t long until the race was red flagged when a multi-car pile up at the first chicane, just seconds into the opening lap, saw the race halted for 35-minutes.
At the restart, it was deemed that the safety car would lead the field, with Gary in 15th place when green flag racing got underway again.
Gary continued to lap in 15th position, until a mistake meant that he made contact with the crash barriers. Now bearing a puncture, Gary was forced to pit to repair the damage. This set-back cost Gary a lot of time, and from there he was in a race of his own, eventually crossing the line in 18th place. Due to a post-race penalty for a competitor, Gary’s result was promoted to 17th.
“That was a very tough race,” Gary said post-race. “The position was not bad after the re-start, but it is relatively difficult to overtake here. I tried to stay in touch, but picked up a puncture on the wall and had to come into the pits. I am disappointed with my mistake. We wanted to score points today, but unfortunately, that was not to be."
Formula E will head to America for the season’s double-header finale in New York on July 13-14, where Gary will be hoping to finish his maiden Formula E campaign on a high note.