The E-Prix in Cape Town, South Africa, continues to leave a lot to analyze and make projections for the next races of the Formula E season 9 calendar.
In this case, the NIO 333 driver, Dan Ticktum made an assessment of his route in the competition that took place last February 25. “It’s a very bumpy, fast and challenging circuit. Even on one lap in qualifying, but for 30 laps in a row, trying to manage the energy and everything else, people trying to stall you. It was pretty tough.”
The racer achieved sixth place and a career-best finish around the South African street circuit and is currently going through his second year in the all-electric championship.
With the pace of the car, especially in the qualifying stage, being very fast, NIO has aimed to finish inside the top 10 to improve on its records from season number 8.
“I think that’s probably the most I’ve focused on for a long time given,” Ticktum joked after securing a sixth-place finish and collecting eight points.
After qualifying ninth for the inaugural Cape Town E-Prix, Ticktum managed to navigate the grid, but it wasn’t easy.
After the circuit, Ticktum explained how drivers should take care of their new sustainable Hankook tires. “We still have to experience the tire going off in practice. We don’t have very long practice sessions, so as the tire gets hotter, it loses grip, just like any other formula series.”
He noted that in high-speed corners where drivers bottom out in the middle with big snaps it’s hard to know how much to push and how much to let the tire let go.
With Sergio Sette Camara as a teammate at NIO, who has also had good results with a fifth-place finish in India, the team has good feelings about this debut of the Gen3 era.
“I think this year is definitely a step forward in terms of team performance,” said NIO Director Alex Hui. “We still lack resources and procedures in some areas, which we try to do as much as we can. But this year, the package is more or less frozen,” he added.
He expressed motivation that during this season and next season, the big manufacturers will be able to do more development with the current package, although he acknowledged that the development rate for NIO as a smaller team will be more limited.