Wehrlein: Cold conditions could be hurting Mahindra

Wehrlein: Cold conditions could be hurting Mahindra
By AutoSport

17/04/2019 at 12:35

Pascal Wehrlein suspects his Mahindra Racing team is struggling in cold conditions as the Rome E-Prix was the third "not so great" ABB FIA Formula E race in a row.

Wehrlein made an immediate impact in FE by being in contention to win in both Chile and Mexico, but showed disappointing pace in Hong Kong prior to a coming together between team-mate Jerome D'Ambrosio and Dragon Racing's Felipe Nasr.

Following a warm Sanya race in which Wehrlein struggled, Mahindra has conducted testing as part of its manufacturer allowance for 2019/20 - with the additional aim of getting on top of its recent poor form, after Wehrlein suggested the team should revert to an older specification.

But Wehrlein recorded a low-key 10th-place finish on a damp-but-drying Rome track, and he told Autosport after the race he believes the Mahindra M5 Electro is affected by cooler weather.

He said: "It helped [going back to an older set-up], I said in the race that the pace was a lot better than in qualifying, but somehow the balance was quite different in the race.

"It seems we struggle a bit more with colder conditions.

"Hong Kong was cold, here [in Rome] was cold. Mexico and Chile were really hot.

"[It's] low grip and you're trying to change things but you always hope for big steps and, in the end, if you miss the grip you can change whatever you like on the car and it won't improve."

The former Formula 1 driver explained he felt more comfortable in the car again with the older specification now applied.

"We thought about a few things [after Sanya] and yes we went back on some things," said Wehrlein before the Rome race.

"I think I wasn't 100% happy in the car [pre-Rome].

"We changed quite a few things coming to Hong Kong and Sanya and I think we tried it.

"Then it's always weird because you don't have the right feeling and how to expect it [to behave].

"Now I have the feeling for it again, some things I liked and some things I didn't."