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Formula E

Rowland criticises Da Costa disqualification: 'I didn't deserve to win'

Oliver Rowland inherited last Saturday's victory in Misano after Antonio Felix da Costa was disqualified five hours after the race had concluded.

Rowland Misano
To news overview © Alastair Staley / Formula E

Oliver Rowland has criticised the disqualification of Antonio Felix da Costa in last Saturday's Misano E-Prix which saw him inherit victory, with the Nissan driver believing that the technical regulation broken by Porsche was not "performance enhancing".

Rowland secured his first victory since the penultimate round of Season 6 (2019/20) under the strangest circumstances, as he initially celebrated finishing second on the podium.

Da Costa provisionally won the inaugural Misano E-Prix and celebrated by jumping into a swimming pool; however, five hours later, he was stripped of victory and disqualified by the FIA.

The official announcement was made by the FIA at 20:20 local time, five hours after the race concluded.

It meant Nissan missed their chance to celebrate their first win as a Formula E Gen3 manufacturer, whilst Rowland was also robbed of a victory celebration. Of course, the big bonus is that Rowland received the 25 points and the confidence of winning.

Despite this, the Nissan driver does not believe the disqualification of Da Costa for his Throttle Damper Spring not being in conformity with the technical regulations was correct.

"I mean, it's never the way you want to win, right, you want to stand on top of the podium," Rowland told RacingNews365. "And in some aspects, I don't class it as like a pure win, if that makes sense. Because I didn't stand on top of the podium.

"And I think what the judgement was for after the race wasn't performance enhancing and I didn't deserve to win that race, let's say, because somebody beat me. What I will take is the points and the rest of the stuff that comes with it. And also the confidence for the team.

"We've put one on the board now, so it kind of relieves a little bit of pressure on that side moving forward."

Sleeping troubles

On Wednesday evening, Porsche officially lodged their appeal to overturn Da Costa's disqualification, meaning Rowland may lose the victory.

Going back to last Saturday at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli, Nissan became aware that something was going on with Da Costa's car after it remained in parc fermé for a considerable amount of time.

Because of this, the Japanese manufacturer asked questions, making them aware that the result could change. Hilariously, when the FIA announced the disqualification, Rowland was in the process of changing hotels, following a restless night last Friday.

"Where I was, I actually had a lot of noise in my hotel on Friday night, and I think I slept an hour and a half," revealed the Briton.

"So I was swapping hotels and walking between the two of them when I had a call from the team. And they sort of informed me that we'd won the race. To be honest, it became quite apparent quite quickly after the race that there was something not quite right.

"So we were aware that something was ongoing there, and it when a car stays in parc fermé for that long, obviously, there's always a few questions asked.

"So we were a kind of aware that something was ongoing. And for it to last that long. Normally, it's not probably a good outcome when it's going on for that long. So yeah, I was walking between my two hotels."

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