Points for Paffett in Paris
Points for Paffett in Paris

Bromley’s Gary Paffett delivered a stellar race performance in Paris as he held his nerve in treacherous conditions to battle through from 17th on the grid to pick up an eighth-place finish to secure points for the second time this season.

Starting the weekend strongly, Gary demonstrated his driving skills early in the morning as the two-time DTM champion coped admirably with the wet track in the first free practice session, setting the fourth-fastest time of the whole field.

The rain was followed by sunshine, but the conditions remained cold and the teams and drivers were faced with the challenge of reacting to the new weather conditions – a challenge that HWA RACELAB mastered.

Despite a strong car underneath him, Gary made a small error in qualifying on the 1.93-kilometre circuit around Les Invalides and as a result, qualified in 19th place before later being to 17th place after penalties were distributed.

Gary then drove a focussed race from the start, avoiding any risky manoeuvres in the opening stage of the race. Track conditions then changed dramatically at the halfway stage of the race. A heavy shower caused much standing water on the track which turned the Paris streets into an extremely slippery surface.

With many drivers being caught out by the adverse conditions, including Gary’s teammate Stoffel Vandoorne, the E-Prix remained chaotic, with a host of spins, collisions and retirements.

Gary showed all his talent and experience, holding his nerve to gain position after position. He had reached the ninth place by the time the safety car made an appearance. The race had only just re-started when there was another collision and yet another retirement. This put Gary eighth, a position he held on to superbly to finish in the points for the second time this season.

Speaking after the weekend, Paffett said: “What a race! After qualifying, I was disappointed at first. To finish in the points from 17th on the grid is fantastic! I stayed clear of all the problems and the pace was very good. The car behaved superbly, even on the wet track. It was a tough battle, but a fun one. I am pleased for the whole team that we have picked up points again.”