|José María López|
|Date of Birth||26th April 1983|
|Date of Death||Unknown|
|Début||2016 Hong Kong ePrix|
|Former Teams||DS Virgin Racing|
|Formula E Career|
|Total Entries||18 (18 Starts)|
López would leave the DS Virgin team at the end of the 2016/17 season, leaving him without a drive for 2017/18. Yet, the Argentine would rejoin the series sooner than expected, taking over Neel Jani's seat after the Swiss racer left Dragon Racing ahead of the 2018 Marrakech E-Prix.
After starting his career in karts in his native Argentina, López moved to Europe in 2001 to secure his first proper race seat, the Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup. Two seasons in that series saw López achieve a single victory, although he would also spend the 2002 battling to the title in the Italian Formula Renault Championship, beating future Formula One racer Robert Kubica. The Argentine's momentum would follow him through into the 2003 season, where López secured the Formula Renault V6 Eurocup title.
Single Seat DreamsEdit
Form 2004, López would entertain hopes of competing in Formula One, although he would have to jump through numerous hoops to do so. A season in the International Formula 3000 Championship saw López finish sixth, before getting drafted into F3000s replacement series, GP2. During his two seasons in GP2, López would serve as the test driver for the Renault F1 team, before signing himself up for the future flop that was the US F1 Team.
After the 2006 season, López decided to return to Argentina, racing in numerous Touring Car Championships as well as the American Le Mans Series. He would make the TC 2000 Championship in his native Argentina his own over the next six seasons, taking three titles as his hopes of an F1 career faded away.
For 2013, López secured his first drive in the WTCC, making his debut at the Argentine round of the 2013 season. A stunning debut saw him sweep to victory in the second race of the weekend, with both Independent trophies on offer also falling López's way. For 2014 the Argentine was called up to the Citroen Racing Team, where he would dominate both the field and his teammates to secure a maiden World Championship, a feat López repeated with equal supremacy in 2015.
Formula E HistoryEdit
With Citroen looking to deepen their involvement in Formula E, the French car maker persuaded partners Virgin Racing to take on López for the 2016/17 season, partnering him with Sam Bird. López's first taste of the Formula E car would come at the 2016 Donington Test, with the Argentine bested by his British teammate across the six days, although the pair were closely matched throughout.
López would make a poor start to the season in Hong Kong, retiring from the opening round after a self-induced accident, having just been awarded FanBoost. However, the Argentine would bounce back in Marrakech, claiming his first points finish of the season, a feat he would match at his home race in Buenos Aires. López would follow that up with a strong performance in Mexico City, claiming sixth after avoiding the late race chaos.
Another retirement followed in Monte Carlo, before López produced his best performance of the season in 2017 Paris ePrix to finish second. Benefiting from trouble suffered by other drivers, including teammate Bird, López quietly got on with his work to finish less than a second behind winner Sébastien Buemi, a result which catapulted the Argentine into the top ten of the Championship standings. His form carried over into the two Berlin ePrix, with López just falling shy of the podium in both races but claiming solid points finishes.
However, López would miss the New York double header that followed due to his WEC commitments, a decision that partially contributed to his fall from Formula E. His replacement Alex Lynn performed brilliantly in both races despite retiring, and with López's backers Citroën looking at other options in Formula E, his time with DS Virgin Racing looked to be up. Regardless, López would return for the season ending double header in Montreal, ending the season with a second podium finish.
López would leave DS Virgin at the end of the season having effectively lost his seat to Lynn after the Brit's impressive debut cameo. The Argentine racer was therefore left without a drive for the 2017/18 season, prompting him to assess his options. That was, until López was approached by Dragon Racing shortly before the 2018 Marrakech E-Prix, who hoped that the Argentine would replace the departing Neel Jani in time for the third race of the season.
Full Formula E RecordEdit
Shown below are a series of tables outlining José María López's career in Formula E in statistical form.
Formula E EntriesEdit
The list below includes all of the teams and cars, as well as overall finishing positions for José María López during their FE career:
|José María López's Overall Formula E Record|
|2016/17||DS Virgin Racing||37||VIRGIN DSV-02||9th||65|
|2017/18||Dragon Racing||6||Penske EV-02|
Below is a table showing José María López's full Formula E record.
|FIA Formula E Championship Record|
Videos and Images:
- Morio, 'File:Jose Maria Lopez 2014 WTCC Race of Japan.jpg', commons.wikimedia.org, (WikiMedia: Commons, 25/09/2014), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Jose_Maria_Lopez_2014_WTCC_Race_of_Japan.jpg, (Accessed 24/04/2018)
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 'DS VIRGIN RACING CONFIRM NEW LINE UP FOR 2016/17 FORMULA E SEASON: JOSE MARIA LOPEZ TO PARTNER BRITISH DRIVER SAM BIRD', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 07/07/2016), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2016/july/ds-virgin-racing-confirm-new-line-up-for-201617-fia-formula-e-season/, (Accessed 08/07/2016)
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 'Jose Maria Lopez replaces Neel Jani at DRAGON', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 05/01/2018), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2018/january/jose-maria-lopez-replaces-neel-jani-at-dragon/, (Accessed 05/01/2018)
- ↑ 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 'José María López', wikipedia.org, (Wikipedia, 05/09/2016), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jos%C3%A9_Mar%C3%ADa_L%C3%B3pez, (Accessed 10/09/2016)
- ↑ 'Buemi holds on in Hong Kong', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 09/10/2016), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2016/october/buemi-holds-on-in-hong-kong/, (Accessed 09/10/2016)
- ↑ 'Buemi becomes hat-trick hero in Buenos Aires', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 18/02/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/february/buemi-becomes-hat-trick-hero-in-buenos-aires/, (Accessed 19/02/2017)
- ↑ 'Di Grassi produces masterpiece in Mexico', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 01/04/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/april/di-grassi-produces-masterpiece-in-mexico/, (Accessed 02/04/2017)
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 'Buemi hands Renault e.dams emotional Paris win', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 20/05/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/may/buemi-hands-renault-edams-emotional-paris-win/, (Accessed 21/05/2017)
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 'Lynn joins Bird for full-time drive at DS Virgin', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 05/09/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/september/lynn-joins-bird-for-full-time-drive-at-ds-virgin/, (Accessed 05/09/2017)
- ↑ 'Vergne victorious, Di Grassi wins title', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 30/07/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/july/vergne-victorious-di-grassi-wins-title/, (Accessed 30/07/2017)
- ↑ 'Lynn joins Bird for full-time drive at DS Virgin', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 05/09/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/september/lynn-joins-bird-for-full-time-drive-at-ds-virgin/, (Accessed 05/09/2017)