Ex-Renault F1 junior Fenestraz joins Jaguar as FE reserve driver

Ex-Renault Formula 1 junior Sacha Fenestraz will serve as Jaguar's reserve driver and will be on-site for Formula E's season-opening Riyadh races

Ex-Renault F1 junior Fenestraz joins Jaguar as FE reserve driver

Fenestraz drove for Jaguar in last year's rookie test in Marrakesh, setting the 10th-fastest time overall and outpacing the British outfit's other tester Jamie Chadwick by over two tenths.

The Frenchman takes over reserve driver duties from Tom Blomqvist, who joined Jaguar in the middle of last season and was called up when James Calado had to miss the final two races in Berlin due to clashing commitments in the FIA World Endurance Championship with Ferrari.

But with Blomqvist having left Jaguar to become one of the NIO 333's full-season race drivers alongside incumbent Oliver Turvey, Jaguar has had to recruit its third reserve driver in two years - after its original signing Alex Lynn left to join Mahindra Racing mid-season in 2020.

Fenestraz was originally due to take part in SUPER GT's pre-season test at Okayama on 6-7 March, but has been unable to reach Japan in time to serve the mandatory 14-day quarantine, leaving him free to complete his reserve driver duties with Jaguar.

"I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Jaguar Racing in Marrakesh last year - to now be the reserve driver for this iconic brand and alongside one of the strongest driver line-ups in the world championship is a big moment for me," said Fenestraz.

"Formula E offers a challenge very different to anything I have raced in before and I can't wait to support the team and return to the electric racing paddock."

Jaguar said that Fenestraz will support the team in the Diriyah E-Prix and a number of other rounds that will be announced at a later date.

"It is great to have Sacha joining us as reserve driver," James Barclay, Team Director Jaguar Racing said.

"He is a young, talented driver who has a great character and is really enthusiastic about this opportunity, he will be an important addition to the team.

"We were impressed with his approach and performance in the the one-day rookie test in 2020. We are pleased to have him join the team."

Fenestraz was a member of Renault's driver academy in 2018 but was dropped after a single season in European F3 due to a lack of results with an underperforming Carlin team.

With little budget to continue in Europe, and faced with the prospect of quitting racing altogether, Fenestraz moved to the Far East in 2019, signing up for a twin programme in Japanese F3 and SUPER GT's secondary GT300 class.

The move to Japan immediately yielded success, with a dominant title run in Japanese F3 and a podium in GT300 earning him a factory Toyota contract for the following season.

Now in Japan's two biggest categories, Fenestraz finished fourth in SUPER GT's GT500 class with as many podium finishes, while a maiden campaign in Super Formula returned a rostrum result and a 13th place finish in the championship.

He will remain with Toyota in Japan in 2021 but will replace new Envision Virgin driver Nick Cassidy in the #37 TOM'S GR Supra, moving over from the team's sister car. In Super Formula he will remain with Kondo Racing for a second season.

Jaguar's recruitment of Fenestraz as a reserve driver follows the Tata Motors-owned automaker's decision to become an all-electric brand by 2025, boosting its chances of staying in Formula E for the Gen3 era from 2022/23.

shares
comments
Dragon Penske Autosport set to commit to Formula E Gen3 rules

Previous article

Dragon Penske Autosport set to commit to Formula E Gen3 rules

Next article

Why Formula E's 2021 season will be a crucial litmus test

Why Formula E's 2021 season will be a crucial litmus test
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula E
Teams Jaguar Racing
Author Rachit Thukral
How Vergne and Vandoorne found redemption in Rome Plus

How Vergne and Vandoorne found redemption in Rome

Another Formula E double-header, another double dose of frantic action. While the form guide remains unpredictable following fightback wins for Jean-Eric Vergne and Stoffel Vandoorne in Rome, the speed and consistency of Mercedes – both on and off the track – could have its rivals worried for what is to follow

Formula E
Apr 12, 2021
What Nissan's commitment to Gen3 reveals about Formula E's future Plus

What Nissan's commitment to Gen3 reveals about Formula E's future

Formula E's Gen3 era grid continues to take shape, after Nissan opted to commit to the series for another four years. Nissan's global chief operating officer explains why it has thrown its lot in with FE while other high-profile marques have decided to call it quits

Formula E
Mar 24, 2021
Why the new Formula E season got off to such a controversial start Plus

Why the new Formula E season got off to such a controversial start

With the new Formula E season belatedly getting underway in Saudi Arabia, the championship appeared to try to make up for lost time with an overspill of action and controversy on and off the track. While some talking points could have serious repercussions, it was an explosive opener for many reasons

Formula E
Mar 1, 2021
How Andretti is planning for life after BMW Plus

How Andretti is planning for life after BMW

Michael Andretti's team is a Formula E ever-present and that's not about to change despite BMW's forthcoming exit. But, with both its drivers contracted to the German giant and McLaren weighing up a possible entry, some key decisions lie ahead

Formula E
Feb 26, 2021
The eight major plotlines to watch in Formula E 2021 Plus

The eight major plotlines to watch in Formula E 2021

The delayed 2020-21 Formula E season gets underway this week with a double-header in Saudi Arabia. The testing times were too close to call a favourite, but that's not the only area of interest to follow as the championship enters a crucial year

Formula E
Feb 25, 2021
Why Formula E's 2021 season will be a crucial litmus test Plus

Why Formula E's 2021 season will be a crucial litmus test

As off-track politics threatens to overshadow events on it, the upcoming Formula E season is perhaps its most important since the championship's inception. And that's a shame, given that the focus should be on what promises to be its closest title fight yet

Formula E
Feb 24, 2021
How Mercedes and Porsche can avoid a difficult second FE album Plus

How Mercedes and Porsche can avoid a difficult second FE album

DS Techeetah remains FE's benchmark outfit, but it can expect a stiff challenge this year from two German automotive giants in their second seasons as full manufacturer entries. Here's how Mercedes and Porsche are doubling down to bridge the gap

Formula E
Feb 17, 2021
The magnificent seven Brits fighting for FE bragging rights Plus

The magnificent seven Brits fighting for FE bragging rights

A record seven British drivers will contest Formula E this season, including two squads with all-British lineups. But before they can consider challenging DS Techeetah for the crown, each must lead their teams' recovery to the top

Formula E
Feb 15, 2021