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Jake Hughes: ‘Working together’ set to be ‘crucial’ for McLaren in Diriyah
Jake Hughes “can’t wait” for this weekend’s Diriyah E-Prix double-header, with the Riyadh Street Circuit set to host rounds two and three of the 2022/23 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship, where the NEOM McLaren Formula E Team driver will be keen to repeat his Mexico City performance.
The rookie was sensational at the season opener, after claiming third on the grid before finishing fifth in the race, proving that he is a driver not to sleep on this season. Hughes showed consistent pace in Mexico City, something which would massively benefit him this weekend, at one of the most challenging circuits of the season. This weekend will be a huge test for both the Brit and for McLaren, with “working together” being key to mastering the tight and twisty track.
Any driver error will be punished, with there being absolutely no room to correct a mistake. Despite the challenging nature of the track, Hughes believes it is “one of the best” of the season, suggesting that the twenty-eight year-old is full of confidence ahead of the weekend.
“I can’t wait to race in Diriyah this weekend. I had a very positive first race in Mexico City, qualifying P3, finishing P5. It was my first Formula E race as a rookie, my first points and a good foundation to build on this season. I’ve been really impressed with how the team have adapted to Gen3 and we’re working together really well.
“That will be crucial in Diriyah this weekend as we head into the first double header of the season. I think the track is one of the best on the calendar, so I’m really looking forward to it and hopefully with the same work ethic and same preparation we had in Mexico City, we can achieve similar results.”
“I’m looking forward to turning things around” – René Rast
René Rast is also “really looking forward” to this weekend’s action in Diriyah, with the Saudi Arabian venue being one of his favourites of the year. The German will be hoping that his enjoyment of the track will be rewarded, with the returning driver being in need of a points finish.
Rast retired from the race in Mexico City following a late collision with Oliver Rowland; however, even without the collision, points weren’t on the cards for the McLaren driver.
Rast’s experience of the Riyadh Street Circuit will be useful to McLaren this weekend, given that Hughes has never raced at the circuit. His best result at the venue previously is fourth, a result that the German driver would likely take in a heartbeat if on offer this weekend.
He’s hopeful that the weekend will be a “positive” one given his struggles in Mexico City, where he “didn’t have the weekend I wanted”.
“I’m really looking forward to the Diriyah E-Prix. It’s one of my favourite circuits, it’s very quick, especially in the first two sectors and there are a lot of medium and high-speed corners. Hopefully this translates into a positive and I can have more success compared to the Mexico City E-Prix, where I didn’t have the weekend I wanted. I’m looking forward to turning things around in Diriyah.”Credit: Sam Bloxham courtesy of FIA Formula E
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