22 Jul 21

PREDICTOR TIPS: Who to watch out for in the Heineken® London E-Prix

London's calling for all-electric street racing as the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship returns to the UK capital, the series isn't back for any old encounter, with the city hosting the first-ever international motor race to take place inside and outdoors. Get yourself set for this historic event with another batch of predictor tips.

London is back on the Formula E calendar after a four-year absence with a new location around the ExCeL exhibition centre in England's capital.

PREVIEW: Everything you need to know about the Heineken® London E-Prix, Rounds 12 and 13

The 24 world-class drivers will not only face a brand new circuit, but they'll face a world-first challenge with a track that weaves inside and out the halls of the ExCeL before tackling the streets around East London's historic Royal Docklands.

All-electric street racing has been to London before, at Battersea Park way back in Seasons 1 and 2 of the series, where both Nelson Piquet Jr and Sebastien Buemi took their titles. A lot has changed since then.

With only four rounds to go and a hotly-contested FIA World Championship up for grabs, let's take a look at some candidates for your Predictor line-ups.

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For the win

There are seven Brits all looking to impress in front of a home crowd, leading that charge is Jaguar Racing's Sam Bird. The Londoner arrives at his home race at the head of the Drivers' standings, bouncing back with a dominant victory last time out in Round 11 at New York City. The Jaguar man also has a race-winning pedigree in the UK capital, taking one of the wins here in Season 1.

In a season full of unpredictability - even by Formula E's standards - current championship leader Bird and Edoardo Mortara (ROKiT Venturi Racing) before him both jumped up to the top of the standings from 11th in the table - the latest driver down in that position? None of than Nissan e.dams' Oliver Rowland. Another Brit looking for some success at home, Rowland is just 22 points away from the lead and will be looking to add to Nissan e.dams winning tally in London as the team have taken three victories out of four visits to the city.

A pair of those victories came in the hands of Nicolas Prost. The Frenchman - driving for Renault e.dams - became the first driver to take both wins in a doubleheader back in Season 2. Another Frenchman looking to take glory away from the Brits at home is Jean-Eric Vergne. The DS TECHEETAH driver was looking feisty last time out in New York City and was close to the win in the first race, but he'll be looking to bounce back after a DNF in Round 11. 

Top qualifiers

Maximilian Guenther (BMW i Andretti Motorsport) has had the most Super Pole appearances out of anyone this season, with his sixth visit coming in race 1 in New York City. After a somewhat unassuming season so far points-wise, Guenther went on to take his first win of the season in that race. The German is still without a Julius Baer Pole Position in his career, could this change in London?

TAG Heuer Porsche's Pascal Wehrlein is on a strong run of form since Puebla in Mexico, where he took his first pole position of the season. The German currently has the best qualifying average and made two visits to the Super Pole shootout in NYC.

It may be his rookie season, but Nick Cassidy is on an ascent. The Envision Virgin Racing driver left NYC with a largest points haul of any driver, bagging 48 points and another podium finish from Formula E's visit to the USA. The New Zealander has shown his pace this season, in only his fourth attempt, he rocketed to a debut pole at Rome in Round 4.

Fast laps

Every little helps in this season's fight for maiden FIA World Championship honours. Right here in London, we saw the fastest lap point play a pivotal role in Sebastien Buemi's title-winning campaign in 2015/16. Despite a collision between Audi's Lucas di Grassi and the Swiss driver, the two rivals jumped in their second cars, continuing on track in a tense battle against the clock. A battle of one-upsmanship each lap in search of the bonus point to secure the championship, which would ultimately go in Buemi's favour.

There's still the only driver to have picked up more than one TAG Heuer Fastest Lap and that is Rene Rast. The Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler driver has three to his name so far this season - he's been racking up Predictor points for the other categories.

Another pair of fresh faces picked up the fastest lap point in New York City, with Antonio Felix da Costa (DS TECHEETAH) and Sam Bird the latest to join the ranks of drivers scoring that extra point for setting a quick time in the race. Both of them left NYC right back in the championship hunt and sitting pretty on the top two steps of the standings.

Wildcards

With London back on the calendar for the first time in four years, it's a local race for seven of the 24 drivers on the grid, and they're all capable of winning. As mentioned Bird is leading the Brit pack heading into Rounds 12 and 13, but of the seven Jake Dennis is the only other British driver to take a victory this season. 

The BMW i Andretti Motorsport rookie had a breakthrough win in Valencia, going lights-to-flag in a race that, on paper, no one wanted to lead given the energy management implications. Since then, he's had two Super Pole appearances in Puebla, can he shine under the ExCeL spotlights?

ROKiT Venturi Racing and Edoardo Mortara will be on a mission to climb back to the top of the Drivers' standings. The Swiss-Italian failed to score any points in either New York City race but the pace was there, London will be a clean slate and he will be looking to recapture the podium form in Puebla that propelled him to the top.

The reigning champion is on a rise. Da Costa stealthily made his way back into championship contention in New York City. Much like in his championship-winning campaign last season, the Portuguese driver is building momentum to defend his title and be crowned Formula E's first-ever World Champion.

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