After taking a fourth-place finish at the first Diriyah race, Bird’s crash in qualifying for race two left him on the back foot – resulting in the British driver only managing to find a 15th-place finish.
Bird says that Jaguar’s data was actually more encouraging from the second race and felt it was a “different level” to the first, feeling the opener left him “worried” despite just falling short of managing to make his way onto the podium.
“It was the other way around,” said Bird when asked if he took more encouragement from the opening race.
“You guys just wouldn’t have seen that because you haven’t looked at the data, you haven’t explored it.
“Race one, after that I was really worried because I felt like we had no pace. But there were reasons why, we got an okay result, but it could have been a lot better.
“If you take the pace from race two, [it’s a] different level. So, okay, I made a mistake in quality. We didn’t get any points but if you look at the pace, we’ll be doing okay.”
Bird felt that he had “hopefully enough” to put together a more representative result at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, but added that the rest of the field was too “strong” and “competitive” to ignore.
“[We’ll have] hopefully enough. But there’s there’s 21 amazing drivers out there that I’ve got to try and beat, everybody’s strong, everybody’s competitive, and I’ve got to deliver the goods.”
Sam BirdJaguar Racing
Photo by: Carl Bingham / Motorsport Images
His Jaguar team-mate Mitch Evans won the Mexico City E-Prix in 2020 at a relative canter, showing the British marque’s strong pace at the venue with the current generation of car.
The Kiwi driver called Mexico a “special” place for Jaguar, given its past achievements at the circuit.
“It’s great being able to come back here. It’s been a special place for the team since we first arrived in the championship, it was the first race we scored points. And obviously with the win two years ago, it was really special.
“But it’s also special with the crowd in the stadium. I could hear them on lap one, and I could hear them on the last lap which actually, I was a bit scared because [I thought] ‘What’s going on’, they’re just so excited and passionate and just bring so much energy to the to the event.”