HWA RACELAB effort goes unrewarded in first farewell race

HWA RACELAB narrowly missed out on the points in a wild first race at the final event of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship in New York City. Gary Paffett was the victim of several questionable manoeuvres and eventually crossed the finishing line in eleventh place. Stoffel Vandoorne ended the action-packed E-Prix in 13th place. The team from Affalterbach still has one chance to finish its first season with a happy ending.

  • 11th place for Gary Paffett, 13th place for Stoffel Vandoorne
  • Gary Paffett: "A few people clearly crossed the line."
  • Stoffel Vandoorne: "I was denied by the unfair racing of other drivers."
  • Ulrich Fritz: "Our goal remains to end our first Formula E season on a high.

New York City, 13th July 2019 – The HWA RACELAB drivers struggled at the start of their farewell weekend in New York City. Gary Paffett and Stoffel Vandoorne had problems with the grip on the dusty surface around the Brooklyn harbour. Gary qualified 15th, while Stoffel had to settle for 19th place. Following a penalty awarded to a rival driver, the multiple Fanboost winner was promoted to 18th place on the grid.

The performance at the start of the race was completely different: Gary made a fantastic start, passing two cars in the first corner. The opening lap had still not been completed by the time he had made up another two positions, putting him eleventh and within touching distance of the top ten and the points. Stoffel did not make such a great start, initially losing ground before taking advantage of a collision involving several drivers in front of him, on the back of which he climbed into 16th place.

When the race had calmed down a little, Felipe Massa (Venturi Formula E Team) got his braking all wrong whilst attempting to overtake Gary on lap 15. The DTM champion was given no choice but to back out. Several drivers seized this opportunity to pass Gary, resulting in him dropping back to 15th. On lap 25, the British driver was the victim of another fierce attack. Jerome d’Ambrosio (Mahindra Racing) forced him towards the crash barriers in one corner, which again allowed several of his rivals to pass him. The 38-year-old suddenly found himself back in 17th.

The race remained hectic. Once again, there was a collision between two drivers. Stoffel kept his cool in all the turmoil and climbed into tenth place. However, with a points finish in view, the Belgian could do nothing to stop two cars passing him two laps from the end of the race. He then had no chance to avoid a collision involving multiple cars on the final lap, and came to a standstill. Gary benefitted from this chaos, pulling past to finish the E-Prix In eleventh place. Stoffel crossed the finish line in a damaged Venturi VFE-05 in 13th.

Quotes on the race  

Stoffel Vandoorne (27, Belgium, car number 5), 13th place
"A frustrating day. I had the feeling that we deserved to finish in the points today. I worked my way through the field well and had made it into the points positions. In the end, however, I was denied by the unfair racing of other drivers."

Gary Paffett (38, England, car number 17), 11th place
"That was a tough race, a little adventure. I made up a few places at the start and was well positioned to pick up some points. After that, a few drivers attempted some unfair manoeuvres. We certainly also saw some good racing today, but a few people clearly crossed the line. The car felt good and I did everything I could. Here's to a new day tomorrow!"

Ulrich Fritz, Team Principal HWA RACELAB
"A disappointing race for us. That was primarily due to the various incidents that cost us a few positions and left us with two damaged cars. That is simply frustrating. Particularly as we were in a promising position, from which we could have picked up points. However, the good thing about this double-header event is that we get another chance tomorrow. Our goal remains to end this weekend and our first Formula E season on a high. We will do everything we can to achieve that."

On 14th July, the 2018/19 ABB FIA Formula E Championship comes to an end with the second race in New York City (race start: 22:00 CET).


About HWA AG
HWA AG is an independent, 360° engineering specialist in the fields of automobile racing and high-performance cars. Formed in 1998 by Hans Werner Aufrecht, the company is based in Affalterbach (Germany) and employs roughly 300 highly-qualified members of staff. HWA AG offers all its products and services under the motto ENGINEERING SPEED: The company’s objective is to develop the best possible, high-quality solutions, in order to get its partners and customers to their destination quicker. The portfolio of services ranges from designing all vehicle components to assembling complete cars, together with the relevant logistics, after-sales and support services.

HWA RACELAB is HWA AG’s operations team in motorsport. It brings together experienced specialists in high-quality race engineering and the associated services, in pursuit of success on the motorsport scene. HWA RACELAB enters Formula E as a new team in the 2018/19 season, adding a future-oriented string to HWA’s wealth of racetrack expertise. Furthermore, HWA RACELAB races in the new, international FIA Formula 3 championship in 2019. With eleven Drivers’ titles and over 180 race wins as a works team for Mercedes-AMG in the DTM, the company is one of the most successful players in international motorsport. HWA RACELAB also draws on the company’s other core areas of expertise, such as the development, assembly and running of GT cars for customer racing, as well as the assembly of Formula 3 race engines.


Oliver Kapffenstein
Motorsport Communications, Formula E

tel:            +49 (0) 711 17 57 00 4
mob:         +49 (0) 160 8 67 47 97
email:       o.kapffenstein@hwaag-partner.com

Marlene Wieland
Motorsport Communications, Formula E

tel:            +49 (0) 711 17 51 80 3
mob:         +49 (0) 160 8 62 80 80
email:       m.wieland@hwaag-partner.com