Andretti Formula E have confirmed that Jean-Eric Vergne and Simona de Silvestro will drive for them in the 2015/2016 Formula E world championship.
The deal will not affect Vergne’s chances of getting a drive for the Haas Formula One Team that makes it’s debut in 2016 according to reports.
Jean-Eric joined Andretti from the Punta del Este ePrix onward in late 2014. He secured pole position in his first start and was on course to challenge for the win when he suffered a mechanical failure. Podiums and more pole positions would follow, with Vergne eventually ending the season 7th in the drivers’ standings having missed the first 2 races.
Simona joined Andretti for the final 2 races at the London ePrix in Battersea Park. She finished just outside of the top 10 in both races. She has also driven for Andretti in IndyCar for select races this season; earning a best finish of 4th for the team in the Indy Grand Prix of Louisiana at the NOLA Motorsports Park.
Vergne’s new deal with Andretti is believed to not affect his chances of racing for the new Haas Formula One team that joins the championship next year. Haas team principal Gunther Steiner listed him as one of their potential drivers a few days ago. If Vergne was to be picked for a drive, he is understood to be able to leave Andretti. He would still be able to race for them in the opening 3 rounds that take place in 2015.
In other recent driver news, Dragon racing have confirmed that Jerome D’Ambrosio will remain with the team for the next season. He took 3 podium finishes in the 2014/2015 season which included a victory following Lucas Di Grassi’s disqualification from the Berlin ePrix.
“It is with great excitement that I will be at the wheel of the Dragon Racing entry for the second season of the FIA Formula E Championship,” said D’Ambrosio. “I have watched the entire Dragon Racing organisation produce race wins and podium finishes, and I feel that we have the opportunity to build on the knowledge and experience we all gained in season one.”
Additionally, the 2014/2015 Formula E drivers’ champion Nelson Piquet Jr will drive for Penske in an IndyCar mid-season test at Sonoma having made his Indy Lights debut earlier this year. It is unlikely that Piquet will move to the IndyCar championship full time after the Brazilian took last seasons championship and resigned with the NEXTEV TCR team on a multi-year deal.
Finally, speculation is rife that the 1997 Formula One world champion Jaques Villeneuve could race in the next season of Formula E having driven the new Venturi car in a shakedown test. The Canadian, who has also driven in IndyCar and NASCAR over the years, has expressed his interest in driving in Formula E during the last year.