Daniel Abt is one of the six drivers to have contested every round of every season of Formula E’s history – and the last of those to take his debut win, on his 36th race entry.
Having out-performed current champion teammate Lucas Di Grassi all weekend, Abt said that he doubted anyone would have imagined he would take Audi’s first win as a full factory team – “I don’t think the odds on me were very good or a lot of people would have bet on me. I think what really helped me is that Audi gave me the trust and the belief that we can achieve good things together. Coming into the season it gave me an extra motivation, an extra confidence also. Maybe that was why I could perform the way I did this weekend.
“Of course they also did an incredible job that is capable of winning. Overall I think we can be very proud. I’m now a little part of Audi’s history. I’m not unhappy, but I want to make sure that we have more success together.”
Abt’s last race win was in GP3, contesting the title to fellow current Formula E drivers Mitch Evans and Antonio Felix Da Costa in 2012. As one of the earliest drivers to join Formula E, as well as the youngest in the first season, Abt chose to commit to the series at a time when most others continued to pursue Formula 1 drives.
On his 25th birthday, he has finally taken a race win, saying “I just tried to do the best I could, make no mistakes, keep it going and actually I remembered just a few weeks ago, two weeks ago when I watched the Macau race, the F3 race, I said that kind of stuff never happens to me when you’re in second or third and then for some reason you get that first place. It happened today. I think it’s just… it’s very delightful for everyone, for me first of all, but for everyone in the team. They worked so hard.
“I think it was not easy for Audi to stick with me coming into this season. Obviously when your last name is the same as the team, you always get looked at a bit different. There were a lot of people saying that I don’t deserve to be here, and I think this weekend was really time to prove them wrong. I think we are championship leaders, so that’s something incredible. I’m just very, very happy.”
E-Racing.net met Daniel in the media pen as he was congratulated by teammate Lucas Di Grassi – who joked that their luck had switched, Lucas languishing with zero points so far, 17th in the championship while Daniel has taken the lead and said that he was happy for Abt’s win.
We asked Daniel whether he thought he could win the race at any time before the checkered flag – “Not necessarily, in the beginning I thought it would happen, because we had a good car yesterday but then I saw Mortara pulling away and I could not really go for it. I did not really think it was possible but then I had this feeling… you know, it’s Formula E, anything can happen and it did.”
He said of the last two laps, when he took the lead from Mortara’s spin, he told himself “