It’s the same car as last year: Bird

With four races remaining, Sam Bird has become Jean-Eric Vergne’s closest title rival in a car that has not changed very much from season three. 

The Brit is currently 31 points behind Vergne in the championship fight but is worried that his DS Virgin Racing team won’t be able to respond to anything Techeetha do to improve their car for the final stint of the season.

“It’s effectively the same car from last year,” stated Bird. “Other people have made big improvements from last year, and we have kind of stood still, but our car is still good enough to fight and we are maximising the potential of our car all the time.

“Mexico was a bit of a blip with that but its hard to be perfect all the time. I had a damper failure in qualifying there and in the race, we tried something extreme but it didn’t work, but in every other race we have been fighting for podiums,” added Bird.

With Bird consistently being in the top five for the majority of the season with a car that hasn’t improved its powertrain from a year ago has been impressive and is something that team principal Alex Tai has been impressed with over the course of the season.

“We have a good system already,” said Tai. “So we decided that we didn’t need to change anything powertrain side. The team made some small changes to modes and thinks but that was it. 

“We were hoping to be really reliable for the start of the season, and pick up big results early in the season, as others struggled with their new systems. But that didn’t work out, because in our refresh of parts there was an issue with our gearbox. 

“Therefore, we actually suffered more than most teams at the start of the season which was not ideal. However, the strength of our engineering team, our mechanics and our drivers which has given us our success so far this season,” added Tai.

DS virgin Racing is currently second in the teams’ championship, and are 55 points behind Techeetah with four races remaining.

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