Cape Town winner António Félix da Costa returned with a vengeance at the Portland International Raceway and climbed the podium for the third time this season. After travelling to the US state of Oregon as the leader of the drivers’ classification, Pascal Wehrlein made it into the points with eighth place. At the home race of the American Porsche customer team Avalanche Andretti, Jake Dennis (GBR) clinched second place with the Porsche 99X Electric. Watched by team owner and US motorsport legend Michael Andretti, André Lotterer (GER) finished in P19.
In the teams’ classification of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship, the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team leads after twelve of 16 races with 231 points, followed by Envision Racing (225), Jaguar (184) and Avalanche Andretti (177). Pascal Wehrlein ranks third in the drivers’ championship with 138 points behind the new leader Jake Dennis (154) and Nick Cassidy (NZL/153). António Félix da Costa (93) ranks sixth with André Lotterer (23) in P15.
In the qualifying session on the 3.19-kilometre Indy Car circuit, António Félix da Costa made it into the duels with his Porsche 99X Electric and started the race from P7. Right from the outset, he battled his way up the order and reached second place after five of 32 laps. On lap 22, he swept into the lead for the first time. Putting in a spirited drive, he fought among the leading pack until the end and ultimately took the flag in third place. Tackling the race from P18, Pascal Wehrlein scored important points for himself and his team with eighth place after numerous overtaking moves.
Comments on the Portland E-Prix, Race 12
Florian Modlinger, Director Factory Motorsport Formula E: “That was a very challenging and strategic race that ended with a podium finish for António. Our qualifying wasn’t ideal. Pascal, however, worked his way up the field admirably but was repeatedly caught up in incidents that resulted in him losing ground. Had this not happened, it might have been enough for a top 6 result. Antonio’s race was great. He stayed among the frontrunners and sometimes led the field. We’re pleased with his podium result. In Rome, we now have to make sure that we close the gap in the drivers’ standings.”
António Félix da Costa, Porsche works driver (#13): “I’m thrilled with the podium. It was a great race with a great result. We fought hard but we possibly took the lead a little too early. As a result, it became a bit tight with the energy at the end. Still, we know what we have to improve on for the last four races of the season. We’ll continue to do our utmost to secure the title for Pascal and the team.”
Pascal Wehrlein, Porsche works driver (#94): “That was a very strange race – so chaotic with so many cars wheel-to-wheel – we’ve never experienced that before this season. Everything was very close, especially in the second half of the race, and I kept losing places. I could definitely have done more today but being so far off in qualifying makes the race difficult.”
The next event for the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team is the Rome E-Prix on 15 and 16 July with races 13 and 14 of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship.
Porsche in Formula E
In 2023, the squad contests its fourth season in the world’s first all-electric racing series with the new Porsche 99X Electric. Avalanche Andretti fields two Porsche 99X Electric as the first Porsche customer team in Formula E. As an accelerator for innovative and sustainable mobility technologies, Formula E has brought thrilling motorsport to people living in major cities since 2014. With the all-electric Taycan Turbo S, Porsche again supplies the official safety car, and thus underlines the importance of Formula E for Porsche Motorsport.
Go West: The Portland E-Prix on 24 June marks the first time that the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship competes in America’s northwest. The race in the economic hub of the US state of Oregon is the final event outside Europe before the innovative electric racing series turns onto the finish straight of the season. Pascal Wehrlein and António Félix da Costa (POR) will tackle the event for the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team in the Porsche 99X Electric.
The USA is not uncharted territory for Formula E. Long Beach, Miami and New York have hosted Formula E since the series began in 2014. With the Portland E-Prix in Oregon’s most populous city, the northwest of the country now opens up. After Hyderabad, Cape Town and São Paulo, the Portland International Raceway is the fourth new circuit on the 2023 Formula E calendar. Alongside the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team, Porsche’s customer squad Avalanche Andretti also fields two Weissach-developed Porsche 99 X Electric racers on the IndyCar circuit with the 3,425-metre Mount Hood as the backdrop. Jake Dennis (GBR) and André Lotterer (GER) compete for Avalanche Andretti.
With the Portland race, the final third of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship gets underway – and it promises to be an action-packed event. With five races left on the calendar, not much separates the hottest aspirants for the title: After recently celebrating his third win of the season in Jakarta and reclaiming the top spot in the drivers’ standings, Pascal Wehrlein has 134 points to his credit. He sits just one point ahead of Jake Dennis, the winner of the opening race in Mexico, with six points between Wehrlein and third-placed Nick Cassidy (NZL). Cape Town winner António Félix da Costa ranks sixth with 78 points, with André Lotterer in 14th place.
In the teams’ classification, the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team reclaimed the lead after the first race of the Jakarta doubleheader and extended it in the second race. After eleven of 16 rounds this season, the outfit from Weissach leads the championship with 212 points ahead of Envision Racing (190), Jaguar (171) and Avalanche Andretti (156). With a total of four race wins thanks to Pascal Wehrlein (3) and António Félix da Costa (1), the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team is the most successful squad of the season so far. With Avalanche Andretti’s victory at the season opener, the new Porsche 99X Electric has so far notched up five victories.
Q&A on the Portland E-Prix
Florian Modlinger, Director Factory Motorsport Formula E
With your victory in Jakarta, you regained the lead in the world championship. After a few difficult races, how did this improved performance come about and what does it mean for Portland?
Florian Modlinger: “Our strong performance can’t be attributed to individual parameters. In Jakarta, we put in a brilliant team effort under extreme conditions, for which I cannot thank our team at the racetrack and in Weissach enough. The squad was very well prepared for this challenge. The track characteristics and the external conditions suited our car well. Qualifying was our best so far this season and this was crucial for Pascal’s incredible victory in the first race. We have to build on this performance in Portland and try to focus on extending our championship lead with another top result.”
There are only five races left this season. Do you think the fight for the title will go down to the wire at the London finale? And how do you prepare for the new racetrack in Portland?
Modlinger: “After two-thirds of the season, the field is incredibly close, especially in the drivers’ championship, where Pascal leads by just one point. I’m expecting a tough battle for the title right up to the last race. But first, there’s Portland as the fourth new circuit this season. We’ve never raced there before and so we don’t have any relevant data. The fact that the Portland International Raceway is not a typical Formula E street circuit but a permanent racetrack that is used by the IndyCar Series, among others, makes no major difference to how we prepare. The layout looks very interesting and it brings new and exciting challenges for the entire technology package of our Porsche 99X Electric. We’ve prepared meticulously for this.”
Pascal Wehrlein, Porsche works driver (#94)
How relieved were you after your win in Jakarta, and where did the new qualifying performance come from?
Pascal Wehrlein: “Jakarta was a mega weekend for us with my win in the first race and a good harvest of points in the second event. This meant we regained the lead in the world championship that we lost in Monaco and it underlined that we’re still in the game, that we’re still a force to be reckoned with. The joy and relief were huge. As far as qualifying is concerned, after Monaco we analysed what went well in the first races and what we could’ve done better midseason. We drew the right conclusions from this. We now aim to turn all of this into a top result in Portland.”
Portland isn’t a street circuit but a permanent racetrack. Has that influenced your preparation?
Wehrlein: “Not at all. We ticked off our normal to-do list in the simulator and got a good idea of how the track will feel. I think we’ll arrive in Portland with a good baseline package and we’ll be strong there. The next few weeks will be very intense, which makes it very important for us to start the last third of the season successfully in Portland.”
António Félix da Costa, Porsche works driver (#13)
In Jakarta, you added crucial points to the excellent team result. How do you see your role for the rest of the season?
António Félix da Costa: “I’ll support the team and Pascal as much as I can and do everything to ensure that both world championship titles go to Porsche. I’m happy to take on this role because I’m sure Pascal would do the same for me if the roles were reversed. That’s not a problem for me. This is a team sport. Our common goal is to win races and championships. That’s our job.”
Portland is the fourth new track of the season. What’s the big challenge?
Da Costa: “The circuit is super fast. Energy management will play an important role. In terms of strategy, it certainly won’t be easy, but that said, we did well at other new racetracks this season. We climbed the podium in Hyderabad and won in Cape Town. Why should Portland be any different? I think it’s great that we’re racing in the USA again. The events there are always something special.”
Portland International Raceway is located ten kilometres north of downtown Portland on an island in the Columbus River. The permanent racetrack is a regular fixture on the American IndyCar Series calendar. For Formula E, the circuit featuring twelve corners was extended slightly to 3.190 kilometres. Two straights offer good overtaking opportunities out of the slipstream. The medium-speed section between turns 4 and 8 is technically demanding and requires a well-balanced car.
Live TV and Internet coverage
The worldwide broadcasting schedule of the Formula E event is available at https://www.fiaformulae.com/en/ways-to-watch
The Media Service
Due to the time difference (CEST minus 9 hours), the first photos from Portland will be available on the Porsche press database on 24 June. The report from Race 12 will follow in the early morning of 25 June. Further information about the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team will be posted live on the Twitter channel @PorscheFormulaE. All relevant information about the team, the drivers and the racing series can be found in the Porsche Formula E Media Guide at https://media.porsche.com/formula-e. The content will be regularly updated throughout the season and expanded with additional interactive material.
The Porsche 99X Electric
Porsche contests season 9 of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship with the Porsche 99X Electric. The new electric racing car featuring the Porsche E-Performance Powertrain – which underwent modifications in Weissach for the third generation vehicle in the innovative electric racing series – also serves as a development platform for the sports car manufacturer’s fully-electric production models. Energy management and efficiency are important factors for success in Formula E and Porsche’s all-electric production cars. The maximum output of the Porsche 99X Electric is 350 kW (476 PS), which is 100 kW more than the predecessor generation (Gen2). At least 40 percent of the energy used is recuperated via regenerative braking. The new cars are the fastest, lightest, most powerful and most efficient electric vehicles ever built.
Porsche Taycan Turbo S safety car
Porsche is committed to Formula E safety: With the all-electric Taycan Turbo S, Porsche again supplies the official safety car this season – thus underlining the importance of Formula E for Porsche Motorsport. Thanks to its driveability and safety as well as an output of up to 560 kW (761 PS, Taycan Turbo S: Electric power consumption* combined (WLTP) 23.4 – 22.0 kWh/100 km, CO₂ emissions* combined (WLTP) 0 g/km, Electric range* combined (WLTP) 440 – 467 km, Electric range* in town (WLTP) 524 – 570 km), the top model in the Taycan range is the ideal choice as a safety car in the world’s first electric racing series. The striking paintwork incorporates the colours of all eleven competing teams as well as those of the FIA and Formula E. The design symbolises the joint commitment to the future of all-electric motor racing as well as social values such as diversity and community.
Formula E is the world’s first fully-electric racing series bringing thrilling motorsport to people living in major cities since 2014. As an accelerator for innovative and sustainable mobility technologies, it promotes the worldwide acceptance of electric vehicles. Eleven teams tackle the 2022/2023 season with 22 drivers. This guarantees interesting and fiercely competitive races. The TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team contests its fourth season of the innovative electric racing series with the Porsche 99X Electric.