Barnsley man Oliver Rowland still believes he can finish his first season in Formula E as the series champion.

The 26-year-old from Penistone has enjoyed his ‘rookie year’ in the electric car championship which is seen by some as an emerging contender to Formula One as the top motorsport series in the world.

Rowland is currently ninth, 37 points behind the leader Jean-Eric Vergne, with 75 points available this season from this weekend’s race in Bern, Switzerland then a double header in New York City next month.

Rowland told the Chronicle: “I can still win the championship. It’s a tall order but you can’t write me off just yet. My aim is to win in Bern and get a lot closer to the leaders for the final races in New York.  Third place is definitely possible but I am not going to stop believing in first place until it is impossible.” 

Rowland collected only six points from the first five stages but has claimed 57 from the most recent five, including second places in China in March and Monaco last month. He is now hoping for a first victory.

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“The first win is definitely something I am pushing for, but so is everybody else. I have already achieved more than I thought I would this season but of course I have one eye on a race win which would be brilliant. The target was always to get used to the series, the tracks and the team this season then go for the title next season. 

“Overall it’s been a good season.  “I have made a couple of mistakes, without which I might be first or very close, but it’s my rookie season in the championship.  “I have been on pole for three races and no one else has had more than one pole.” 

There have been four weeks between the last race in Berlin, where Rowland came eighth, and the trip to Switzerland. “It has been nice to have a break after a lot of back-to-back races. I needed it. We’ve done a lot of preparation and I’m ready now for Bern. None of us have ever raced there before so it will be a very new and different experience. 

“It looks a super hard track with a lot of ups and downs which will demand a lot of the cars and us as drivers. Our last race didn’t go the way we wanted it to but we understand why and we’ve been working hard on the car.”