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James Newbold

Frijns makes Formula E comeback with Abt after Sebring race return

The two-time FE race winner broke his left wrist after clouting the back of Norman Nato's Nissan on the opening lap of the season-opening Mexico City E-Prix and was replaced by Abt reserve driver Kelvin van der Linde for the Diriyah double-header and Hyderabad round.

Van der Linde was also scheduled to race on home turf in Cape Town, but both Abt entries and those of technical partner Mahindra were forced to withdraw on safety grounds due to a rear suspension fault.

Following his race return with WRT in the World Endurance Championship's Sebring 1000 Miles, which yielded sixth in the LMP2 class, Frijns will return for this Saturday's race on the site of the former Sao Paolo IndyCar race as the former Audi works squad seeks the first points finish of its comeback.

Team-mate Nico Muller's 11th place in Hyderabad is Abt's best result so far.

Frijns reported that his “hand feels good” and that the Sebring weekend “went smoothly”, giving him confidence for his FE comeback.

“It feels insanely good to be preparing for a race again with Nico and the whole team – it’s so good to be back,” said Frijns.

“The past two months have felt like an eternity. Many thanks to the team, the FIA, all the doctors and physios, and the whole Formula E paddock, who have been patient with me despite me being so impatient.”

Robin Frijns, ABT CUPRA Racing, Mahindra M9Electro (Photo by: Carl Bingham / Motorsport Images)

Team boss Thomas Biermaier said he was “delighted that Robin is back on board and will certainly support us with his experience” as the team regroups from its Cape Town non-start.

“The break was good for the whole team, everyone was able to take a deep breath and gather new strength,” he said.

Biermaier also paid tribute to van der Linde's contribution as a stand-in, with the South African remaining involved in its FE set-up alongside his planned DTM programme with the squad.

“At the same time, we say a big thank you to Kelvin, who has done a mega job on and off the track over the past two months and will of course remain part of the team,” he added.

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