Mercedes-Benz EQ announced this morning that Gary Paffett will continue with the team as the reserve driver in the ABB FIA Formula E Championship.
Paffett, who has won two DTM championships with Mercedes, drove for HWA Racelab last season before they became the Mercedes-Benz EQ team for season 6. Paffett scored points in three races during the season and will now fulfill the roles of reserve driver, development driver as well as being their Sporting and Technical Advisor.
“On the one hand, I’m obviously a bit disappointed that I won’t be competing for Mercedes-Benz in Formula E this season,” said Paffett.
“But on the other, I’m very excited to be part of the team and to be supporting Mercedes-Benz in their first year in Formula E as Reserve and Development Driver. At the same time, it will be very interesting to help out on a sporting level at the race weekends, trying to get the best possible performance out of the two race drivers and the entire team.”
“It’s very important to have a racing driver as part of the management team. I understand how drivers think and how to get the best out of them. In me, they have a partner to discuss their performance with and to talk about the car. It’s a new role for me and one that I’m looking forward to.”
Team Principal of the Mercedes-Benz EQ Formula E Team, Ian James, is glad to see the Brit remain associated with Mercedes and believes he will continue to play a major role in the team’s development.
“Gary has been an important pillar of our motorsport programme for the past 16 years,” said James. “Gary Paffett’s name is inextricably associated with Mercedes-Benz Motorsport.”
“He is not only an exceptional driver but also a charismatic and judicious leader, which qualities he has repeatedly demonstrated in the DTM as our team captain. In addition, there is hardly any driver who is able to push forward the development of a car better than he can.”
“We are therefore delighted to have appointed Gary as our Sporting and Technical Advisor and as the Reserve and Development Driver for the Mercedes-Benz EQ Formula E Team. There is no doubt that he will continue to play a major role in the future development of the team, as indeed he always has.”