Formula E: Liuzzi, Pic in for Cerruti, Tung at Miami

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Two more FIA Formula E teams will have different lineups at this weekend’s Miami ePrix compared to the most recent round in Argentina in January.

The Trulli team announced Michela Cerruti would be withdrawing her participation for professional reasons. Cerruti failed to score a point in four races, and posted a best finish of 12th in Round 3 at Uruguay.

In her place is Vitantonio Liuzzi, who has most recently competed with the Lotus LMP1 team.

“I’m very happy about this nice opportunity to race with Jarno,” Liuzzi said, via the official Formula E website. “I was here on holiday when I got a call from Jarno asking if I wanted to race for the team, of course I said yes.”

Liuzzi is, interestingly, the fifth ex-Scuderia Toro Rosso driver in the field.

Others include Sebastien Buemi (e.Dams), Jaime Alguersuari (Virgin), Scott Speed and Jean-Eric Vergne (Andretti).

Meanwhile China Racing will have Charles Pic fill in for Ho-Pin Tung this weekend. This is the second race Tung has missed this season; Antonio Garcia made his series debut in Uruguay over the winter.

Pic raced the season opening round for Andretti in China, starting seventh and finishing fourth.

All told, four teams have made driver swaps heading into the weekend. The Liuzzi and Pic additions follow from Dragon Racing adding Loic Duval in place of Oriol Servia, and Andretti naming Speed to fill in for Marco Andretti.

NEOM McLaren Formula E announces Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast for 2023 season

McLaren Formula E Hughes
McLaren Racing
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Doubling down on their commitment to electric auto sports, McLaren Racing announced Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast to compete in the 2023 Formula E Series (FE), which completes their driver lineup.

The NEOM McLaren FE team was formed by the acquisition of the Mercedes-EQ Formula E team that won the 2021 and 2022 championships with Stoffel Vandoorne and Nyck de Vries behind the wheel.

“Today’s announcement feels like a long time coming,” said Ian James, managing director of NEOM McLaren Electric Racing in a release. “Since May this year, when we first announced McLaren Racing’s entry into Formula E, we have been working tirelessly to get in place the best possible team and structure for sustainable success.

“On the one hand, we have been working on the retention of the amazing talent that already was in place before going into the transitional phase. I’m proud to say I think we’ve done a great job on that front.

“On the other hand, we have been focusing on putting in place new processes and new talent – and the latter includes the drivers.”

The driver lineup clasps the two hands together.

Hughes brings 10 years racing experience in single seater cars, including a role with the acquired Mercedes-EQ team as a reserve and development driver for the past two seasons. He is the 2013 BRDC Formula 4 champion and has multiple wins in Formula 2, including two in 2020.

Announced in August, Rast joins the team after earning two podium finishes and six top-fives in 22 career Formula E starts for Audi Sport ABT before returning to the DTM Series last year. Rast’s best finish in Formula E came in the Puebla E Prix when he finished second to teammate Lucas di Grassi by less than a half second.

McLaren’s commitment to Formula E comes one year after they entered the Extreme E rally series in 2022 with Tanner Foust and Emma Gilmour in the driver lineup. After a modest start to the season, the McLaren XE drivers crossed the finish line first in Round 4 in Chile, but were assessed a time penalty that dropped them to fifth. Last week in the season finale in Uruguay, they held onto a hard-earned second place finish.