Strong run-in for Nato ensures Nissan pip customers McLaren

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Strong run-in for Nato ensures Nissan pip customers McLaren

Norman Nato secured fourth in the season finale, extending his points-scoring run to six races and helping Nissan outscore customers NEOM McLaren at the last in the 2022/23 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship.


Nato secured a season-best result for the team with second place in Rome and was able to follow up with eighth and fourth in London - ensuring Nissan would finish seventh in the Teams' World Championship in their first season as a fully-fledged manufacturer, having previously been operated by the e.dams outfit that they later acquired.

Nissan's late-season run comes in contrast to their customers McLaren, who endured a run of seven pointless races in the last 10 as the inaugural GEN3 campaign reached its home straight. Rene Rast had run as high as second in Round 15 before slipping down the order and ultimately suffering damage in contact with Pascal Wehrlein's TAG Heuer Porsche 99X Electric.


That followed misfortune for the German in Rome, who suffered a technical issue while running in third position. The team undoubtedly had the pace of the Nissans in the run-in, but neither Rast or teammate Jake Hughes were able to convert more than 16 points from the final 10 rounds of the campaign.

Nato called the London finale his "best weekend" yet in Formula E, as he sealed a net 10th in the Drivers' World Championship at the final chequered flag of the season.

Rome motw Nato Nissan podium

"That was my best weekend so far," said Nato post-race. "Beating McLaren in the standings was important but I wouldn't say we were happy with seventh in the table. It's important, and McLaren is a much more experienced team than us who've been champions twice [under the prior Mercedes-EQ guise] yet we ended up beating them with the same package - we can be proud of that."

Sacha Fenestraz felt his teammate "saved" the team, with the French-Argentine struggling in London. "It was a good first step for us," he said. "We're here to win but it was a first step. Now, we need to keep moving forward in the years to come."

Nato's seat isn't secure for Season 10, with rumours Nissan could look elsewhere for someone to partner Fenestraz. The Frenchman said post-race in the Media Pen that he feels his late-season run shows what he's capable of and time will tell whether Nissan or other potential suitors agree.