Coughton racer Alexander Sims on staying at Formula E team Mahindra Racing for another year
ALEXANDER Sims has announced he will be staying with Mahindra Racing for another year and hopes for better fortunes in the next ABB FIA Formula E World Championship campaign.
The Coughton racer enjoyed his first year with Banbury-based Mahindra, but felt there had been too many occasions where he had missed out on good points-scoring opportunities.
Although it’s currently the off-season, there’s plenty of work to be done ahead of the new campaign and the 33-year-old wants to make a drastic improvement on last season’s finish of 19th in the drivers’ standings with 54 points.
“The first year with Mahindra has been good and I think that we’ve shown a lot of potential through the year,” Sims told the Herald.
“However, on too many occasions we failed to capitalise on results where we maybe could have achieved more, so it’s about capitalising on those learnings.
“It’s going to be just as hard to get the results we want next year because it never gets any easier in Formula E.
"There’s still going to be a grid of fantastic drivers and manufacturers, albeit there will be some changes due to BMW and Audi leaving.
“However, we’ve just got to optimise those things that we did not get quite right in season seven and hopefully we can get the results we want as the car has plenty of potential.”
He added: “Overall my championship position was disappointing. It’s a funny one really because you can think 19th is pretty disastrous, however, it’s the reality of competing in a series with high level people around you who are not mugs either.
“You’ve got proven race and championship winners from all sorts of areas of motorsport.
"When I’m down in 18th to 20th in qualifying you think how rubbish that is knowing you’ve made mistakes, but then you’re sat next to an ex-Formula One driver or Formula E champion from two or three years ago and you’re like ‘hang on a second, we’re not that stupid’.
“It’s just difficult to get it right all the time. I try to keep a balanced perspective on it because clearly it’s not easy for a reason.
“Next season I would really like to do better than I did last season.
“The low amount of points finishes is what hurts the most because on enough occasions there have been times where we could have picked up one or two points or finished as high as fifth or sixth where you get ten and eight points respectively.
“Those points start to add up and make a big difference towards the end of the season, so it would be nice to get some more points finishes next season.
“The potential is there which on one side is brilliant because we’re not banging our heads against a brick wall, but at the same time its frustrating because ultimately we’ve had some missed opportunities, but that’s not through lack of trying or hard work.
“What we need to focus on is qualifying further up the front and not being in that mid-pack melee which is often the case. There is the potential in the car to do better than we have been.”
With a passion for sustainability and electric vehicles, Sims – who is a partner with the Heart of England Forest charity – is delighted to be continuing in Formula E once again.
Sims has been involved with the series since its inception in 2014 and hopes to use the platform to create change in his own “small little way”.
“To continue in Formula E is a dream and I don’t say that lightly,” he said.
“It’s the perfect place in motorsport for me in terms of managing my personal interests in sustainability and electric cars alongside my love of racing.
"I hope to continue in the series for as long as I can, but my focus now is on season eight and making the most of the opportunity both on and off the track.
“My main focus will be the racing, but the bigger picture is using the platform to help in my small little way to create a little bit of change and positive movement towards a wider and sustainable approach in all aspects of life, particularly in renewable energy and electric cars.”
Meanwhile, Sims has a new team-mate in Oliver Rowland for season eight of the Formula E World Championship, with the fellow Brit making the switch from Nissan e.Dams to replace Alex Lynn.
“I’m looking forward to having Oliver as my team-mate,” said Sims.
“Oliver has been a brilliant driver in all forms of a motorsport he has been in and as far as I can tell, he’s never really had a weak year – he’s always been super impressive.
“Oliver is extremely fast and I’ve had good tussles with him in races in the past, so I’m looking forward to working with him.”