The six-time E-Prix winner had spent the last six seasons racing for the Maserati MSG Racing squad, but has made the switch to the Indian manufacturer Mahindra alongside Nyck de Vries.
Talking to the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship ahead of the new season, Mortara shares how he’s finding his new home for Season 10 and what teammate de Vries has been like so far.
‘It's always very interesting to change teams,” Mortara explained. “There are different approaches and I've been in Formula E with the same team for the last six years. You get used to the methodology of working, and how to run the cars, even how to drive it. When you change your racing team, obviously these things are changing. It's kind of an eye opener to say. Hopefully, if we work together quite well with good motivation and determination, I think that we can do good.”
Mortara will be partnered with Nyck de Vries, who rejoins Formula E after a stint in F1. The Season 7 champ knows this championship well, and with their joint experience will hope to push Mahindra forward in the teams’ standings this season after finishing tenth last year.
“We’ve had a good time together. We had already met during the presentation and also during the testing, and we're trying to help each other and bring everything forward. That is the approach that we have at the moment. I hope that this helps us be more competitive and fight at the front.
“We can go out and speak about all different things, not only about racing, and this is actually quite cool, especially when you travel the world,” Edo added when sharing that he and de Vries have common interests away from the race track. “You have to share quite a lot of moments together, so it's always good at some point to speak about other stuff.”
Mahindra will be a big change for the Swiss driver, who up until Season 10 had spent all his Formula E career within the Maserati MSG Racing-Venturi bubble. The team underwent changes of team principals, converting into the iconic Maserati brand ahead of GEN3 last year. Mortara, who finished top three in the Drivers’ standings for Seasons 7 and 8, only managed 14th in the table last season, so will hope for better results with Mahindra in the coming season.
“It's never easy to change teams because you have to get used to a new way of working, and new people. In order to be competitive, you need to be feeling kind of at home and these things take a little bit of time. Saying that, it's not the first time that I'm changing teams and I think that I proved during my career that I can do that and bring some positivity to the teams that I joined. This is really what I'm looking for, having a positive impact on Mahindra Racing and hopefully we can do better results.
“I think that you always learn more when you have difficult seasons,” Mortara reflected. “This is what I had last year. It kind of made me change a little bit of the approach that I was having. When you come from very good seasons and we're challenging for the title, or were challenging for the title in Season 7 and Season 9, Season 9 was definitely not the case.
“It made me realise more stuff and definitely made me change my approach a bit. I would say that I'm still extremely motivated and extremely determined, but I'm probably less affected by let's say difficult situations and so I think that is a positive that I'm taking for this new year.”
Despite limited running as a result of a localised fire in the pit lane earlier in the week, Mortara was able to set some rapid lap times when behind the wheel. He finished the three-day session in sixth out of the 20 full-time drivers, with a stunning lap time of 1m24.701s.