Mark Preston: Techeetah Teams' title loss adds motivation for Season 5
After getting beaten to the Teams' Championship by Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler at the New York City E-Prix, Techeetah Formula E's team principal Mark Preston has said that the outfit's defeat adds additional motivation as the all-electric single seater series gears up for its fifth season this December.
Techeetah headed to Formula E's final race weekend of Season Four with a 33 point lead in the Teams' Standings over the resurgent Audi squad, and when Lucas di Grassi and Daniel Abt stormed to a 1-2 finish in the penultimate race of the season, this gap was sliced to a mere six points.
A strong qualifying performance from Andre Lotterer and Season Four champion Jean-Eric Vergne meant that Techeetah lined up in second and third place on the grid for the second part of the double-header New York race while Abt and di Grassi lined up in fourth and fifth.
While Vergne had a strong start to lead into Turn 1 after overtaking Sebastien Buemi and later going on to win at the Brooklyn circuit, Lotterer picked up a 10-second stop-go penalty for a jump start which relegated the German driver to the back of the field, recovering to finish in ninth place.
Another double podium finish for Audi in the season finale handed he German marque the title by a narrow margin of two points, with di Grassi finishing in second place while Abt was third.
"I don't have the words to describe how special this moment is for all of us," said Preston following Vergne's Drivers' Championship victory.
"Many of us have been working towards this day since the birth of the championship, and even before that. Congratulations to Jean-Éric, his skill and race craft are exceptional.
"We have achieved something incredibly special and he and André have given us the best team spirit I have ever experienced.
"This has been a wonderful season," he continued.
"Against all the odds, we have built a team that is capable of taking on the best manufacturers in the championship and compete right to the very end.
"To miss out on the Team Championship will hurt for a little while, but takes nothing away from what we achieved and from winning the Drivers' Championship.
"To do the double would have been the icing on the cake but nevertheless this gives us more fire in our belly in our preparation for next season,"
Season Five of the Formula E Championship will commence on December 15 with the inaugural Riyadh E-Prix.