Audi has learned it cannot take Formula E success for granted - Abt

Alex Kalinauckas
Audi realised it can't take FE success for granted

Daniel Abt says Audi has learned that it cannot assume it will automatically be fighting for ABB FIA Formula E wins and podiums in 2018/19 after a low-key season opener.

Audi recovered from a disastrous start to the 2017/18 championship to win the teams' title as it enjoyed an energy efficiency advantage over the rest of the field during races.

Following pre-season testing last October, Lucas di Grassi outlined his belief that Audi's performance margin was "not as good as last year" and the team recorded results of eighth and ninth at the season five opener in Saudi Arabia.

Abt led di Grassi, who had started 18th, home and then said that Audi had "absolutely no pace".

Speaking ahead of the second race of the season in Marrakech, Abt explained that Audi is "ready to do better than Riyadh".

But he added that the results of the opening race had made it clear to the team where it needed to focus to get back to the front of the grid.

"Our expectations are still high, we want to be here fighting for podiums and wins, so that's always to be the goal, but I think we realised that we need to do a lot of work to achieve it," Abt told Autosport.

"It's not as granted as maybe it was last season. We looked into everything, tried to be better.

"I think we will be better, because here we [will] have let's say a normal race day without rain [which led to two cancelled practice sessions in Saudi Arabia] and with proper preparation.

"But if we are not on it, and do not get everything right, we will again not be at the front.

Audi realised it can't take FE success for granted

"We don't really know [why], but in Riyadh we were not prepared for the circumstances and maybe our car was not working correct for the kind of track we had.

"Some of the others got it right and were stronger than us.

"Here it's a different track, it's a new chance, and hopefully we can show that we were wrong with our feelings and our pace and everything in Riyadh, and that we are better here."

When asked what Audi had been working on since the Riyadh race, Abt said: "Honestly, really on everything.

"We looked into every process, every part of the car, every structure, everything and just tried to recap the race and see what went wrong.

"[That included] what choices we made, what setup we can improve, what software stuff we can improve, what we as drivers can do better.

"That has been the approach and hopefully it works out."

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