Report: Nick Cassidy moves from Envision to Jaguar & becomes teammate of Mitch Evans
Nick Cassidy is to drive for the Jaguar works team in the upcoming 2023/24 Formula E season. That's according to a report from colleagues at 'The Race'. Cassidy would join from Jaguar customer team Envision, taking over the cockpit from Sam Bird and competing alongside fellow New Zealander Mitch Evans. An official confirmation of the transfer by Jaguar is pending and is not expected soon.
Cassidy, who has already claimed three victories in the current Formula E season and is in contention for the world championship title with four races to go, is expected to receive a "multi-year contract." His current 3-year deal at Envision expires after this season. For this reason, among others, there has already been speculation in recent months about a move by the "Kiwi" to the Jaguar factory team. After Cassidy's victory three weeks ago in Portland, both parties came to an agreement, it is said.
"We are of course well underway with our planning for the 2024 ABB FIA Formula E world championship season," Jaguar team boss James Barclay is quoted as saying. However, the South African cautions, "We will announce relevant news, including that of our driver line-up, at a later date." We do not expect the transfer to be announced before the season finale in London at the end of July.
Cassidy would replace Formula E veteran Sam Bird, who is currently competing in his third season for Jaguar. Most recently, the Briton was conspicuous primarily for his lack of results and for causing internal team collisions. From a sporting point of view, therefore, everything speaks in favor of signing the current championship runner-up. According to the report, Jaguar has also held talks with world championship leader Jake Dennis. The Briton, however, is said to have a contract for 2024 with Andretti.
Bird or Frijns to Envision?
There - alongside his compatriot Dennis - Bird could also find accommodation next year. After all, it is well known that Andre Lotterer is unlikely to remain at Andretti and in Formula E in general. A cockpit swap between Bird and Cassidy would also be conceivable, after all, Bird already drove quite a few years with success for the former Virgin team, which now competes under the name Envision.
Another candidate for the vacant Envision cockpit is Robin Frijns. The Dutchman also drove for the then Audi customer team Virgin/Envision in the Gen2 era. Frijns has been in the service of ABT Cupra since this season. While he should feel comfortable in the team per se, he has no prospects of success next year either due to the inferior Mahindra powerplant in his car, as a new engine cannot be homologated until 2025. With Envision, on the other hand, Frijns could supposedly challenge for wins and perhaps even the title.
At Andretti, Frijns would also be eligible as Lotterer's successor, because the driver from Maastricht also drove there in the past. While Frijns still has a valid contract with ABT for the coming season, team boss Thomas Biermaier tells 'The Race', "“If somebody would come, I would be always open to have a coffee with them and have a discussion with them. We have such an open relationship with our drivers, they’re part of our team, part of our family. You always have open discussions and negotiations."
Multiple candidates for Maserati
One competitor in the race for an Andretti cockpit, however, could become Max Günther for Frijns. The German has recently impressed with strong performances and results in his first season for Maserati MSG Racing, but so far probably only has a contract for this year with the Monegasque-Italian alliance. In contrast to his teammate: Edo Mortara is reportedly also firmly in the saddle in 2024 despite a weak season.
With rookie Felipe Drugovich, who will contest the "0th free practice" in Rome for Maserati this Friday, and Nyck de Vries, who has been scrapped from Formula 1, there would, however, be two contenders for a place at Maserati. Despite all this, Günther should be in a good negotiating position.
Cassidy's probable move to Envision has brought relatively late movement to the Formula E driver market. The race for the best seats for 2024 - and the vacant Envision cockpit may well be one of them - is on. For the time being, however, all those involved are concentrating on this weekend's Hankook Rome E-Prix.