Envision Virgin Racing have announced that Nick Cassidy will be replacing Sam Bird in their team for next season’s ABB FIA Formula E World Championship.
Cassidy’s first experience of Formula E came earlier this year when he joined the Virgin team for the annual Marrakesh Rookie Test. The Kiwi driver showed his talent at the test posting the fastest times in both the morning and afternoon sessions, ending the day with a new lap record, over six tenths faster than than the previous.
The 25-year old twice won New Zealand’s Toyota Racing Series before becoming one of the top drivers in Japanese racing, winning titles in Super GT, Japanese Formula 3 and Super Formula where he is the reigning champion.
Cassidy’s signing comes a day after it was revealed that Sam Bird would be departing the team after the Berlin races to join Panasonic Jaguar Racing. The Kiwi’s multi-year deal with the Envision Virgin Racing team will see him line-up alongside Robin Friijns next season to fight for Formula E’s first World Championship title.
In the team’s press release, Cassidy said “It’s a fantastic opportunity for me to be joining Formula E and Envision Virgin Racing from next season. The team is one of the most successful on the grid, have a great set-up and facilities, and have continually impressed me since I joined them for the rookie test back in March.
“All drivers know the depth and quality of the field in Formula E is among the best in the world, so it is great to be adding my name to this roster. Racing in Japan has been an amazing experience and I’m fortunate that I’ve been able to achieve so much in a short space of time, but I feel it’s now time for the next challenge in my career and I’m very much looking forward to doing that with Envision Virgin Racing and Formula E.”
While Sylvain Filippi, Virgin Racing’s Managing Director, said “As a team, it is always important to look ahead to ensure our long-term success. In Nick we know we have a very ambitious, capable driver with raw talent, speed and race craft, as well as an impressive track record for his age.
“Moving to become a world championship next season, we know Formula E is going to be as competitive as ever, but from his short time with us we are confident – together with Robin Frijns – we have two drivers that can compete at the sharp end to win championships.”