Jean-Eric Vergne has said that the Marrakesh E-Prix was the “most difficult” weekend of his Formula E career so far, after suffering with illness.
Vergne felt unwell on Friday and and as a result, it meant that he was unable to take part in any of the Marrakesh E-Prix practice sessions.
But, despite having had no opportunity to get to grips with the circuit, the DS Techeetah driver put in an impressive qualifying run to go 11th fastest, while his team-mate Antonio Felix Da Costa claimed pole position for the first time this season.
Having had a solid qualifying performance under the circumstances, Vergne then exceeded all expectations in the race, as he fought his way through the order, passing Max Gunther for second place, although he finished the race third after the BMW managed to pass him on the final lap.
Despite finding the race weekend one of the hardest of his career, Vergne said after the race that he was pleased to have got his first podium of the season.
“This was definitely my most difficult weekend in Formula E.” commented Vergne.
“Nevertheless, the team did a very good job preparing the car, so I felt like I was in a good place when I jumped in this morning after missing FP1 yesterday.
“I did a good qualifying lap despite the circumstances, only three tenths off and in the race, I just went for it.
“At some point I asked my engineer about my position as I couldn’t believe I was up in P4 by then, the race just flew by and it’s so good to finally be back on the podium but now I will need some time to recover before the next race.”
Vergne’s third place gave DS Techeetah a 1-3, with Fleix Da Costa securing victory, and the result puts the team back in the championship hunt after a difficult start to the year, with the Chinese team now at the top of the team’s standings, eight points clear of BMW i Andretti Motorsport.
Speaking about the team’s result, DS Techeetah Team Principal, Mark Preston said: “I can’t say much more than how proud I am of our drivers and the whole team today.
“Relentless efforts from everyone has put us at the lead of both championships and put JEV back in a place to fight for another championship title.
“Now we need to make sure we continue riding this wave all the way to London and the final rounds of the Season Six championship.”