’It’s a case of who suffers less’ in Jakarta heat

He feels that a Hyderabad DNF and a non-scoring in the Berlin double-header was not an exception to Hughes’ season. The rookie has impressed in both qualifying and race trim and aims to change the latter, having nailed the former more than once in his inaugural Formula E campaign – including last time out in Monaco where second Julius Baer inherited pole position. .

„We left Berlin after two rounds. „The whole season was similar to Monaco, so from my side, I was watching Berlin as something different for us. The pace was strong everywhere else from there, and that trend continued in Monaco – hopefully this weekend, too.

„Race pace is a challenge for us, so qualifying is always very important. We all want to win, and we were able to do that in qualifying, but we want to do it in the race before that. The end of the season. Whether that’s realistic or not, we’re waiting to see, but the result is yours. It’s a result of process and preparation. So, it’s encouraging that we’ve managed to get three or four to five places this year. If we continue that and things fall our way, hopefully we’ll get a podium.”

The Jakarta Challenge

Heat, humidity and a string of constant corners make the Angol Beach circuit a true test in every sense. Hughes says there’s no time to look down the line, and managing energy becomes more difficult than it would normally be to break more than a second apart in a 22-strong field.

„The conditions are the same for everyone and we have to be ready for every event. The track is so good to drive on, you don’t really have a chance to look down your lines – it’s just one turn. It’s a big challenge in terms of communicating with a team and gauging how the energy is going but That is the challenge of Formula E in general.

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„The car tells you when to lift, but for the whole race, you don’t follow it, because everyone does a different strategy and that affects how you have to react in the moment – it’s important and you have to react. For a second, you can feel like you’re freestyling.

„I’ve spent three or four years in the sim now and you don’t race anybody. I felt like I knew everything about Formula E basically, but it’s not like a simulator when you’re on the track.

Preparation is key and Hughes is doing his best to warm things up – not always easy for any driver in England!

„Before a race, there’s only so much you can do. I spent a lot of time in the sauna to get some heat out, and I cycled a lot to get the heart rate down. It’s very different when you do it. You can just get used to it by being here, and who’s less vulnerable than who’s comfortable. That is the question.”

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