Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Round 4 of 10 in the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY
Sanya E-Prix – Sanya, China
DATE: March 22-23, 2019
QUALIFYING BROADCAST: Streamed live on Jaguar Racing’s Facebook channel. Local time 8:35-9:05 a.m. on Sunday, March 23 (7:35–8:05 p.m. ET Saturday)
RACE BROADCAST: Live on FS2 at 2 p.m. local time on Sunday, March 10 (1 a.m. ET on Sunday), delayed or on demand on FS2 via participating broadcasters
TRACK LAYOUT: 2.236km, 11-turn street course, anti-clockwise
RACE LENGTH: 25 minutes + 1 lap
KATHERINE LEGGE’S BEST SERIES START / FINISH: Won Round 2 in Mexico City from pole. Led every lap to become the first female to win on an ABB Formula E weekend.
LEGGE’S BEST START / FINISH IN CHINA: First race in Sanya, second race in China (finished 2nd in Hong Kong)
BRYAN SELLERS’ BEST SERIES START/FINISH: Started 2nd in Saudi Arabia, Mexico City & Hong Kong / 1st in Hong Kong
SELLERS’ BEST START / FINISH IN CHINA: First race in Sanya, second in China (finished 1st in Hong Kong)
RLL’S BEST START / FINISH IN SERIES: 1st – by Legge in Mexico City / 1st – Mexico City (Legge), Hong Kong (Sellers)
RLL’S BEST START / FINISH IN CHINA: 2nd – by Sellers in Hong Kong / 1st by Sellers in Hong Kong
NOTES & QUOTES:
SECOND RACE IN CHINA FOR RAHAL LETTERMAN LANIGAN RACING
Round 4 of the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY will mark the team’s second race in China after having competed in – and won – in eTROPHY race in the Chinese special administrative region of Hong Kong two weeks ago with Bryan Sellers. The inaugural Sanya E-Prix will take place in mainland China in the city of Sanya on Hainan Island. The team’s two-car I-PACE program for drivers Katherine Legge and Bryan Sellers compliments long standing programs in the IndyCar Series and IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. The team is carrying momentum from two consecutive 1-2 finishes in Rounds 2 and 3 with wins in Mexico City by Legge and in Hong Kong by Sellers, while the other finished second.
BRYAN SELLERS ON THE FIRST WIN FOR AN AMERICAN ON AN FE WEEKEND – IN HONG KONG
Sellers became the first American to win a race on an ABB FIA Formula E weekend when he drove to victory in Hong Kong. Scott Speed previously held the highest finishing position for an American when he finished second in Miami in Formula E Season 1 (2014/15).
“To have a second consecutive 1 – 2 finish for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing in Hong Kong was a great moment for the team. It was a very difficult race. This was the first time any of us experienced the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY in those kinds of conditions and it could not have performed better. The series has been very close throughout the races so far and I expect Sanya to be no different. There are a lot of great drivers looking to get on the top step of the podium. It will be extremely important to continue to learn and evolve every weekend to try and keep performing at the best of our ability.”
SELLERS AND LEGGE ARE 1-2 IN SERIES POINT STANDINGS AFTER ROUND 3 OF 10
Sellers took the series points lead with 46 after his win in Hong Kong and is four points ahead of second place Legge, 42. Sergio Jimenez, who is third with 37 points, received a post-race penalty from Hong Kong which will see him drop two grid positions in Sanya due to late race contact with Simon Evans.
RECAP OF HONG KONG
In challenging track conditions due to varying amounts of rain, Sellers qualified second for the third consecutive time for Round 3. In the race, he held his position until Caca Bueno made a mistake a few laps into the race and drove into the wall off of the front straight in the tight turn which moved Sellers and Legge into first and second. Sellers held the position for the rest of the race and took the checkered flag 3.369-seconds ahead of Legge to become the first American to win on an ABB Formula E weekend. In the first three rounds, Sellers finished third, second and now earned his first series win. He was the first American to win an electric car race. The challenging weather conditions contributed to Legge qualifying fifth for the race. On the start, she passed fourth place Stefan Rzadzinski and third place Simon Evans on the outside of the first turn on the opening lap and held her position behind teammate Sellers and race leader Caca Bueno. Once race leader Bueno made a mistake, Legge followed Sellers through to run 1-2. There were some challenges from behind but Legge held on to complete the second consecutive 1-2 finish for the team. It was discovered after the race that she had two slow leak punctures but fortunately was able to finish before that kept her from doing so.
“I felt one of them on the curb and the other one I’m pretty sure was from debris,” said Legge of the punctures. “It’s testament to how the tire holds up under difficult conditions that I was able to make it to the end of the race.”
KATHERINE AND BRYAN ON THE CHALLENGES IN HONG KONG
“The changing conditions were very challenging but the car and tires performed impeccably,” said Legge. “The track was new to us so learning the nuances of that on a wet track was tricky!”
“Hong Kong was extremely difficult due to the changing track conditions,” added Sellers. “It seemed like every time we went on track it was different from the previous time. It made it difficult to really get a flow through the weekend. Having said that it was quite different from all the other weekends and we were able to establish a lot information about the cars in mixed conditions.”
KATHERINE AND BRYAN ON LESSENS LEARNED IN HONG KONG
“I think we are constantly learning the new car and series package so I’m sure there are many things that we keep subconsciously programming or brains with,” said Legge.
“I think one of the biggest things we learned is how to respond to the cars in the wet,” added Sellers. “How they like to be driven and what they like to have changed on them from a setup. This is information that can never come until you are put into the situation.”
KATHERINE AND BRYAN ON POSSIBLY CONTINUING TO SWAP 1-2 POSITIONS
After Legge won the Mexico City race from pole over Sellers, Bobby Rahal commented that it would be great if the two drivers could trade out the top spot each race. When Sellers led a team one-two in Hong Kong, that came to fruition. Both drivers hope that if they can’t win the race, they can finish second to their teammate.
“My turn!” said Legge about Sanya. “We are pushing as hard as we can to keep making that a reality for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing but a lot of it is out of our hands. With the amount of contact that was made in Hong Kong, I think anything can and will happen in the upcoming races.”
“We joked about it in Mexico because it was a great feeling to make everyone proud like we did there,” added Sellers. “Hong Kong was no different. There is something truly special about having a great team day like that. It will continue to get more and more difficult as the races go on. The whole field showed promise this weekend. Caca (Bueno) was quickest in every session, Simon was never more than a tenth away, Sergio charged through the field, Stefan had some of the quickest sectors throughout the weekend, and of course Katherine showed a combination of all those things: speed, race ability and determination. This is a tough series!”
BRYAN AND KATHERINE ON THE SANYA LAYOUT
“We have only seen a track map so far and it looks similar to Hong Kong, but counter clockwise,” said Legge. “We are both excited to see it in person this week.”
“It looks like Sanya will be very similar to Hong Kong in a lot of ways with two long straights and some tight hairpins,” added Sellers. “The tracks however always look very different on their maps to what they do in person. With that said, we will never know until we arrive.”
KATHERINE AND BRYAN — OFF TRACK AND JET LAG
The Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY series schedule includes many bucket list locations around the world. Legge and Sellers are maximizing their trips to see local sights when possible. After returning from Hong Kong, both only had a few days to adjust to the 13 hour time change before getting on track in their respective IMSA GTD programs for the 12 Hours of Sebring on Saturday. They began their trek back to China on Monday.
“Hong Kong is very cool and Bryan and I enjoyed exploring and learning the culture and customs. Sanya looks like a very cool coastal resort with beaches and hopefully we can enjoy some down time there. I deal with jetlag as best I can. Eating well and getting sleep on the plane is key,” said Legge.
“Hong Kong was an amazing city,” added Sellers. “We were able to see and do a lot of things. My favorite part was our trip up to Victoria’s Peak that overlooks the entire city. It’s very surreal to stand up there and look down. I’m looking forward to getting to China to explore Sanya. To be honest the longer jet lag seemed to be a little easier for me than the mid-range jet lag. It’s so far from the current time we are in that your body has to fully reset.”
ABOUT THE SERIES
The Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY is the official support race to ABB FIA Formula E from season five onwards. The championship, a world first, will take place over 10 rounds in nine global cities, with up to 20 entrants competing for a prize fund in excess of £500,000. After becoming the first premium manufacturer to enter the ABB FIA Formula E Championship in 2016, Jaguar has now created the world’s first production battery electric vehicle race series – the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY. The history-making championship is the official support race to the ABB FIA Formula E Championship, with up to 20 cars taking to the grid from season five onwards. The series supports the launch of the Jaguar I-PACE, Jaguar’s first battery electric vehicle, and reinforces Jaguar Land Rover’s future electrification strategy, commitment to electric street racing and ‘Race to Innovate’ mission.