Two Cars in the Points: Impressive Farewell Performance from HWA Racelab

  • 8th place for Stoffel Vandoorne, 10th place for Gary Paffett
  • HWA RACELAB ends the season as the most successful rookie team in Formula E
  • Stoffel Vandoorne: "We deserved this result after a tiring season for all of us."
  • Gary Paffett: "It is a fantastic way to end the season."
  • Ulrich Fritz: "It has been a magnificent journey, with a few set-backs but many highs."

New York City, 14th July 2019 – The final Formula E race day for HWA RACELAB began with a bit of a shock in New York City, when Gary Paffett (Great Britain) put his Venturi VFE-05 in the wall in the morning's practice session. The team then worked hard to ensure that the car was ready in time for the race. And that dedication paid dividends. The DTM champion produced an impressive qualifying performance to secure ninth place on the grid. His team-mate Stoffel Vandoorne was even quicker on the track around Brooklyn harbour. The Belgian set the second-fastest time to progress to the Super Pole for the fifth time this season - another highlight for HWA RACELAB. Stoffel then finished fifth in the shootout between the six fastest drivers.

In the first few minutes of the race, Stoffel set his sights on the podium positions and climbed into fourth place on lap four, just before a safety car phase. However, the HWA RACELAB drivers soon had energy management issues, as the 30-degree heat affected the cars more than expected. Gary fell out of the top ten and Stoffel was also unable to fend off the attacks of the cars behind him for long. He too gradually dropped back to tenth place.

The points finish the team had been hoping for was under threat. However, Stoffel produced a focused display to hold onto tenth place until the final lap, when fortune favoured the HWA RACELAB drivers. With just a few metres of the race remaining, there was a collision in front of the two drivers. Stoffel and Gary passed the cars involved and crossed the finish line in eighth and tenth place. In doing so, the duo presented HWA RACELAB with a double points success. With 44 points, the Affalterbach-based outfit is the most successful rookie team in Formula E history.

The highlights of the 13 races were Vandoorne's podium in Rome and his pole position in Hong Kong. In total, he and Paffett made it through to Super Pole on seven occasions. Stoffel also won the Fanboost vote in 12 of the 13 races. In Season 6, the Mercedes-Benz EQ Formula E Team will replace HWA RACELAB. 

Quotes on the race (and the season) 

Stoffel Vandoorne (27, Belgium, car number 5), 8th place
"It is really nice to end the season with two points finishes for the team. We deserved that after a tiring season for all of us. A few months ago, we started this project from scratch. As such, congratulations to the whole team for the rapid development we have achieved over the course of the season. It was tough at times, but it was all about preparing for the future, and that is the most important thing. I am now looking forward to a short break - we have all earned that now."

Gary Paffett (38, England, car number 17), 10th place
"I am very happy with our last race. After a good start, I was able to defend twelfth place, despite the issues we had with the temperature. The collision at the end allowed me to gain two positions and end the race in the points. It is a fantastic way to end the season." 

Ulrich Fritz, Team Principal HWA RACELAB
"We had a good start and stayed clear of all the trouble. For some reason, we had temperature issues, lost energy and were no longer able to match the pace of the others. As such, we can really be very happy with P8 and P10. It was also the final race in Formula E for HWA RACELAB. We have learned a lot together as a team. It has been a magnificent journey, with a few set-backs but many highs. I am really proud of the team and what we have achieved over the past few months. I can only thank everyone for the incredible effort every single person has put in. We will be back with the Mercedes-Benz EQ Formula E Team in Season 6, and are already really looking forward to it."