“Crazy strategy” failed to pay off for Giovinazzi at Jakarta FE race

Giovinazzi felt that he had enjoyed his best practice sessions of his difficult maiden campaign in the championship, but was unable to capitalize in qualifying after suffering technical issues that did not allow him to set a representative time.

This placed him last on the grid, alongside Robin Frijns who had hit the wall in the group phase of qualifying and was also unable to set a time.

The Italian explained that the strategy he was put on by the American outfit meant that he would consume more energy than his rivals in the hopes of a late change of conditions, but a lack of grip in the setup left him unable to capitalise.

With a red flag or bad weather hence unforthcoming, he thus retired five lapses before the end.

“I think the disappointment was the quali, I think we had the pace to have a good quali,” Giovinazzi told Motorsport.com.

“It was the best FP1 and FP2 of the season; I was in top 10 in FP2, so the start of the day was good. But in quality we didn’t put it together, [so I’m] disappointed with this.

“Then in the race, when you start last, we tried to do a crazy strategy, aggressive strategy to gain position and then maybe waiting for a red flag or rain. We were expecting some rain, but it didn’t happen.

“And to be honest, also if we use more energy, we cannot use energy because the grip is not there on our car.

“So it’s difficult to use energy. In the end, you just consume more but you cannot move forward.”

Antonio Giovinazzi, Dragon Penske Autosport, Penske EV-5

Photo by: Simon Galloway / Motorsport Images

Giovinazzi regardless enjoyed the experience of racing in Jakarta, having visited the Indonesian capital before through his association with the Gelael family through his junior career.

Through Formula 3 and GP2, Giovinazzi was given financial assistance through Ricardo Gelael, who owns the Indonesian franchise of KFC and also funded his son Sean through the junior ranks.

Giovinazzi and Gelael Jr also shared an LMP2 car together in the final two races of the 2015-16 Asian Le Mans Series, winning both at Buriram and Sepang.

“They did a good job with the tarmac, it was quite grippy to be a Formula E track. There was quite a lot of grip straight away from the from the box – and also there was not many bumps there. So yeah, it was a nice track.

“Of course, Jakarta has been a country that is quite particular for myself; I’ve been here for many times for Gelael so yeah, it was nice to be back here. Unfortunately, the race was was not great, but yeah, track was good.”

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