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Paffett takes reserve role with Mercedes EQ

Gary Paffett has joined the Mercedes EQ Formula E team as official reserve and development driver, carrying on with the German marque following his title triumph in DTM in 2018 and his rookie Formula E campaign with HWA Racelab in season five.

Paffett competed for the Mercedes-affiliated team in the 2018-19 season, finishing 19th in the standings with a best race finish of eighth.

Having been replaced in the driver line-up by Formula 2 champion Nyck de Vries, Paffett’s future in Formula E was uncertain but he will  now remain part of the Mercedes family in his new role.

“On the one hand, I’m obviously a bit disappointed that I won’t be competing for Mercedes-Benz in Formula E this season,” said the Brit. “But on the other, I’m very excited to be part of the team and to be supporting Mercedes-Benz in their first year in Formula E as Reserve and Development Driver.

“At the same time, it will be very interesting to help out on a sporting level at the race weekends, trying to get the best possible performance out of the two race drivers and the entire team. It’s very important to have a racing driver as part of the management team. I understand how drivers think and how to get the best out of them.

“In me, they have a partner to discuss their performance with and to talk about the car. It’s a new role for me and one that I’m looking forward to.”

Having been associated with Mercedes since 2003, Paffett’s contributions to the German marque were recognised by Ian James, Team Principal of Mercedes EQ, who was pleased to have the 38-year-old continue with the team.

“Gary has been an important pillar of our motorsport programme for the past 16 years,” said James. “Gary Paffett’s name is inextricably associated with Mercedes-Benz Motorsport. He is not only an exceptional driver but also a charismatic and judicious leader, which qualities he has repeatedly demonstrated in the DTM as our team captain. In addition, there is hardly any driver who is able to push forward the development of a car better than he can.”
“We are therefore delighted to have appointed Gary as our Sporting and Technical Advisor and as the Reserve and Development Driver for the Mercedes-Benz EQ Formula E Team. There is no doubt that he will continue to play a major role in the future development of the team, as indeed he always has.”

About Topher Smith
Topher is an experienced and passionate Motorsport journalist with Formula E, Formula 1, GP2/F2, GP3 and IndyCar all on his resume. When he isn't at the trackside you can find him furthering his own capabilities and knowledge through his endless search for original ideas and material. Also plays league pool.