Formula E | Jaguar's Bird claims debut victory in Saudi Arabia

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Sam Bird, Jaguar Racing
Sam Bird, Jaguar Racing

• Jaguar Racing secured two podium results at the season-opening Formula E round.

• Mitch Evans puts Jaguar back on the podium at the championship.

• Sam Bird claimed his first win for Jaguar after winning the second Diriyah E-Prix night race.

Jaguar Racing's Sam Bird won the second round of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship under the lights of the streets of Diriyah.

It completed a solid weekend for the British racing outfit, who a day prior, saw Mitch Evans secure a third-place finish in the season opener.

In the first race on Friday night, Evans had a great start to the race, moving from sixth to fifth off the line. With two minutes to go before the end of the race, the Kiwi made a decisive overtake on Rene Rast to secure a solid third and 15 points for the British team.

Sam Bird, Jaguar Racing
Sam Bird, Jaguar Racing

After qualifying eighth, Bird had a great start to the race and showed a solid pace. With 25 minutes left of the race, Bird had a collision with Mahindra's Alex Lynn which resulted in the I-Type 5 needing to pit. Bird returned to track in P23 before the team decided to retire the car.

Bird started the second race on the second row of the grid but made a decisive move and progressed into second at the first corner, overtaking Sette Camara.

He battled with his old teammate Robin Frijns for the majority of the race – attacking and defending and showing the pace of the I-Type 5. After multiple incidents, Bird followed the safety car for the last six minutes of the race before taking the victory under a red flag. 

Sam Bird & Mitch Evans, Jaguar Racing
Sam Bird & Mitch Evans, Jaguar Racing

Second race

The second night race brought less fortune to the other side of the garage. It was a frustrating day for Mitch Evans as he started in eighteenth on the grid after Oliver Rowland held up on his qualifying hot lap. The Kiwi did not finish after a collision ended his race. 

James Barclay, Team Director, said: "An absolutely fantastic way to start the season – two podiums in two races, a third place and a win is a really brilliant start for Jaguar in this most incredibly competitive world championship." 

Jaguar Racing Team
Jaguar Racing Team

Sam Bird, Jaguar Racing driver, said: "I'm so incredibly happy right now. Jaguar have opened their doors with open arms, let me into their family and taught me new things. We've worked really hard together during the pre-season and although there were some challenges, we've worked for this result." 

Mitch Evans, Jaguar Racing, Diriya
Mitch Evans, Jaguar Racing, Diriya

Mitch Evans, Jaguar Racing driver said: "The race was always going to be tough from the back of the grid. I was trying to make some progress but ended up losing some places at the start. Although this is disappointing, we've had a great weekend as a team, we've scored great points on both sides of the garage." 

Sam Bird (GBR) Panasonic Jaguar Racing, 1st positi
Sam Bird (GBR) Panasonic Jaguar Racing, 1st position, with his trophy

The lights turn green for the third round of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship on Rome's streets on 10 April 2021.

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