Da Costa: No excuses to not fight for 2024 Formula E championship

Season 6 Formula E champion Antonio Felix da Costa will spend a season season with Porsche

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Antonio Felix da Costa expects to be in the title 2024 Formula E title fight after coming off the back of a learning year in his first campaign with Porsche.

Da Costa left DS Techeetah ahead of 2023 to join Porsche and struggled in the opening races as his teammate Pascal Wehrlein finished in the top two in the season-opening Mexico City E-Prix and the Diriyah double-header.

Due to the points deficit, the Portuguese driver played a team role for the remainder of the season but did manage to win the Cape Town E-Prix with a stunning performance which included an incredible overtake on his former teammate Jean-Eric Vergne.

“I’d be lying if I told you I’d be doing another transitional season, absolutely not,” Da Costa, who finished ninth in the 2023 standings, told Total-Motorsport.com.

“If for some reason we are not competitive, which I don’t think will be the case, then there will be no excuses now. I’m an ambitious person and I’m not here to fill up the grid.

“I think even the years that I did not win the championship, we were always in the fight up to the last day. Last year that wasn’t the case.

“As a team, I think we used myself well at some points where the speed was OK to help Pascal go for that championship, so we worked well as a team.

“But definitely now if I look back, compare myself and the team to 12 months ago, it’s such a different scenario at the moment.

“Even myself driving the car, understanding the team and knowing everyone. Definitely, we want to aim at performing in Mexico and getting a good start to our campaign.”

Da Costa more confident than ever

In October’s pre-season testing, Da Costa set the third overall fastest time behind Jaguar pair Mitch Evans and Nick Cassidy in Valencia.

Jaguar and Porsche had the benchmark powertrains in 2023, winning all but two races. However, the field is expected to converge in Season 10 this year.

Da Costa admits he felt the car was quick straight out of the blocks in testing and if the team can improve their one lap pace, they will be fighting for regular race wins and the championship.

“I don’t want to throw fireworks in the air but at least to my own self and to my brain, I have to tell myself ‘yes’,” continued Da Costa.

“I do really feel good to be honest. I feel like when I’m in the sim, the lap times are coming quicker. When I’m on the racetrack, the lap times are coming quicker.

“So essentially that’s what it’s all about, being quick on the lap times first. Then obviously there will be a lot of variables – operating well on race day, not making mistakes as a driver and team, that will all play a big part.

“But I think in terms of performance I can definitely see myself on a higher level than where I was 12 months ago.”

John Smithhttps://total-motorsport.com
Editor at Total-Motorsport.com and all round Motorsport journalist specialising in Formula 1, IndyCar and Formula E.
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