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Clare's Gary Paffett finishes full race in Formula E for the first time in Chile

By Sport Haverhill

Gary Paffett completed his main objective in Santiago, Chile, this past weekend as he finished a full race distance in Formula E for the first time this season.

PROGRESS: Gary Paffett crossed the chequered flag in Chile at the weekend
PROGRESS: Gary Paffett crossed the chequered flag in Chile at the weekend

The all-electric series arrived at the Circuit Parque O’Higgins for the Santiago EPrix, in Chile, for the third race weekend of the season.

Paffett, from Clare, recorded an impressive 27 laps in the 45-minute free practice, finishing the session in 15th place.

Drawn into group four for qualifying, Paffett was able to post his fastest lap time of the day, in one minute and 9.505 seconds, to qualify in 17th place for the race.

However, after Lucas Di Grassi was excluded from qualifying, the 37-year-old moved a spot up the order into 16th.

In the scorching Chilean heat, Paffett drove a mature race with the prime objective of finishing in the race in the back of his mind.

Due to the extreme heat, intermittent technical issues plagued his race performance and his HWA RACELAB team were forced to change their race strategy to ensure he went the full distance.

Keeping his nose out of trouble and not taking any unnecessary risks, Paffett brought the car home across the finishing line for the first time this season as he took the chequered flag in 14th place.

“It was a very tough race,” he said. “At the start, we were able to match the pace of the others, but we then had to change our strategy due to the high temperatures.

“In the end, we were able to return to the standard settings and the pace was good again.

“We have to learn from situations like this, in order to keep the energy consistent in high temperatures.

“On the positive side, however, we did complete the full race and gained more experience.”

The fourth round of the championship is the Mexico City E-Prix and takes place at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez circuit on February 16.

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