Vergne needed mentality change to end Formula E “negative spiral”

Jean-Eric Vergne admits he needed to change his mentality in order to end his "negative spiral" and secure a breakthrough Formula E podium in the Paris ePrix

Vergne needed mentality change to end Formula E “negative spiral”

The DS Virgin Racing driver had just one points finish to his name - seventh in Punta del Este - all season heading into his home race in the French capital.

Was Paris FE modern motorsport's greatest feat?

Vergne qualified third and clashed with team-mate Sam Bird as they fought over second before securing his maiden podium for the DS Virgin team.

"It's really important," he told Autoport. "In the end I really wanted to change that negative spiral into a positive one.

"For this you need to question yourself. I cannot blame it all on bad luck, which is probably what I did for too long.

"I put in hard work on me to improve and attract good things to me - which happened to me this weekend."

Ex-Formula 1 driver Vergne joined Formula E for the third round of the inaugural season and scored three poles, including one on his debut, and two podiums with the Andretti team over the rest of the 2014/15 campaign.

But he has struggled to get on top of heavier, twin-motor DSV-01 since switching to DS Virgin for season two and has been unable to match the results of Bird, who is third in the points and won in Buenos Aires.

Energy management issues ruined Vergne's season opener in Beijing after he qualified fifth, and he retired at the first corner in Putrajaya after contact.

He charged from 17th to seventh in Punta del Este then missed practice in Buenos Aires through illness, though still managed to finish 11th.

Sixth on the grid in Mexico City became 16th at the finish after being spun while tussling with Loic Duval, and he suffered suspension damage in Long Beach.

Those troubles meant the Paris result was "not a race win but it feels like it for me", especially as Vergne admitted he has had "a hard time to get back on top" after setbacks in the past.

"It's been a difficult season," he added. "I never felt really comfortable with the car and the team has helped me a lot.

"The season has been pretty much a disaster so to finish second in my home race is something I'm quite proud of."

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