Wehrlein replaces Jani at Porsche Formula E team
Porsche has signed former Formula 1 driver Pascal Wehrlein for the 2020/21 Formula E season, replacing Neel Jani in its driver line-up.
Wehrlein moved to Formula E in the 2018/19 season with Mahindra, scoring a pole position and a podium finish in his debut season en route to 12th in the drivers’ championship.
He stayed with Mahindra for a second season in 2019/20, but stepped down from his seat prior to the final six races of the season in Berlin.
The German driver was widely expected to join Porsche for the Weissach manufacturer’s second season in Formula E, and the move was officially announced on Friday, just over 12 hours after the conclusion of the 2019/20 season.
Wehrlein will team up with Andre Lotterer, who has been retained for a second campaign after being recruited from DS Techeetah, replacing Jani.
He joins Porsche after an impressive career that includes winning the 2015 DTM title with Mercedes and a two-year stint in Formula 1 with Manor and Sauber in 2016-2017.
“It is a great honour for me to represent Porsche in the 2020/2021 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship,” Wehrlein said.
“I have always followed the brand’s unique motorsport history. I have huge respect for the legendary Porsche success story. Now, to line up as a works driver for the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team is a fantastic opportunity.
"I would like to thank everyone at Porsche for this amazing opportunity and for trusting in my skills. Now I am looking forward to getting to know the team and starting work in Weissach as quickly as possible.”
Porsche finished eighth in the teams' standings in its maiden campaign in Formula E, with a pair of second place finishes courtesy of Lotterer. Lotterer himself finished eighth in the drivers’ championship, tied on points with Jaguar’s Mitch Evans.
Jani meanwhile endured a difficult season in the sister 99X Electric, scoring a single points finish all year long - a sixth place result in the final double-header at Berlin.
While Jani has been dropped from the Formula E team, the 36-year-old driver will remain a factory Porsche driver, having won the Le Mans 24 Hours with the marque in 2016.
“We are delighted to welcome Pascal to the Porsche family,” Fritz Enzinger, Porsche's vice-president of motorsport said. “He has gained a lot of experience in different race series at his young age, where he has always sparkled.
“We would also like to thank Neel Jani for his outstanding commitment. He played a significant part in the development of our Formula E project and thereby contributed greatly to the successes of the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team this past season.
“Neel will stay with Porsche. We will see him in action in future motorsport projects again very soon which I’m very pleased about.
“With Pascal and Andre we will have two experienced, top-class Formula E drivers in the 2020/2021 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship, who have everything it takes to celebrate further success.”
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