Jean-Paul Driot and e.dams: One year on
Jean-Paul Driot created e.dams to compete in the brand new FIA Formula E Championship in 2014. He saw the team become the series’ most successful, with four titles and 16 races won, before sadly passing on 3 August 2019.
Having already achieved much success with his DAMS squad, e.dams was formed to compete in the all-electric championship initially alongside Renault before partnering with Nissan in 2018. The squad’s pace was evident from the offset, with pole position in the opening two races before Sebastien Buemi brought home the first win in Punta del Este.
Buemi fought for the drivers’ title that year while e.dams became the inaugural team champions at the London finale. The UK capital would host further drama for the season two showdown, as Buemi and e.dams came out on top for both championships that year, with a third teams’ crown added in Montreal the following season.
Nissan arrived at the team for the 2018/19 campaign scoring six pole positions, including a front-row lockout at the team’s home race in Paris. There was also a highlight victory in New York City and a further five podium finishes between Buemi and rookie of the year Oliver Rowland.
Not only does e.dams hold the record for the most victories in Formula E, but it is also the only team to take three wins consecutively, and the French squad boasts more pole positions and titles than any other – all stemming from the work of Jean-Paul.
“Jean-Paul was more than a team principal to me,” said Buemi. “He’s by far the best team principal I’ve ever had. We had a relationship beyond a driver and his boss, he was like a second dad to me.
“We feel his spirit even though he’s not here. He made us feel good and that was one of his strengths as we all delivered to the best of our capabilities. e.dams is family to me and I want to make him proud.
“I can’t wait to go back to Berlin this week, it’s the last time we stood together on the podium in season three. I definitely want to do well there again and make sure his legacy continues to follow us.”
Rowland was part of the sister DAMS FIA Formula 2 team in 2017, winning two races before joining Nissan e.dams in 2018: “Over the past year, we can be quite happy that we’ve made Jean-Paul proud. Everybody within e.dams has worked very hard and of course we miss him deeply.
“I and a lot of other drivers wouldn’t have our careers if it wasn’t for Jean-Paul. I’m often thinking of him and thankful for everything he did for me.”
Jean-Paul’s sons, Gregory and Olivier, have since taken ownership of e.dams: “One year has passed already since a great competitor and strong leader has gone from our lives and the DAMS family,” they said.
“Jean-Paul is with us in every decision we make and each race we compete in. We miss him but we keep his legacy alive in running DAMS and e.dams. Thanks to the complementary strengths and values our father passed to us, combined with this amazing team we have, our competitive spirit is stronger than ever.”
Not one race goes by without us thinking about Jean-Paul, he will forever be in our hearts.