Formula E

"It's a shame" - McLaren drivers Bird & Hughes lament frustrating result at Formula E races in Portland

Timo Pape

Timo Pape

For McLaren, the Portland E-Prix of Formula E was "frustrating" despite a strong pace - especially the second race on Sunday. Both Sam Bird and Jake Hughes retired after a good qualifying session. Particularly annoying for the Brits was the damage to Bird's car, which was hit by a part of Pascal Wehrlein's Porsche.

After Bird had already driven to seventh place on Saturday with good race pace, things initially looked even better for him on Sunday. Third place on the grid - his best qualifying result of the year so far - kept him in the leading group in the early stages of the race. He was then the victim of a collision through no fault of his own.

Pascal Wehrlein had damaged his front wing in a rear-end collision, dragged it around for some time and eventually lost it. The Porsche part crashed into Bird's car behind him, damaging the McLaren at the rear right. With immediate smoke developing, Bird slid onto the grass and then had to pit. "He should have come in!" said Bird on the radio, swearing at Wehrlein and Porsche.

"The fact that I then retired from the race through no fault of my own was very difficult to digest," says Bird, without going into detail about the incident with Wehrlein. "It's a shame that we couldn't score more points. It was a very frustrating day after we had such a strong start in qualifying and were in third place."

Hughes: "Couldn't have done much more"

Teammate Hughes also left Portland with a lot of frustration. He had once again qualified exceptionally well with grid positions 2 and 5 on both race days - but came away empty-handed on both days. "We put in a good performance in qualifying and the car was also very good in the race - it's just a shame that both my races ended prematurely. Unfortunately, there wasn't much more I could have done," said the Briton.

"Overall, this weekend was not positive from a scoring perspective, but it was very positive in terms of teamwork," Hughes continues. "We often talk about performance and not results, and in a race like this you have to keep that mantra. We can take the positives with us to London."

Team principal Ian James echoes the same sentiment: "After a solid qualifying performance from both drivers, it's a bitter pill to have to retire both cars. The preparation and execution of this E-Prix by the team was flawless. That's why we can't dwell on our frustration, but have to prepare for the last two races in London." The season finale in the British capital takes place on 20 and 21 July.

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