ABB Formula E – Swiss ePrix – Race
Hallo MiniE Fans!
The federal city of Switzerland hosts the curiously named “Swiss ePrix” (rather than being called the Bern ePrix) this weekend. Did you know that Bern is the city where Albert Einstein lived when he concluded his theory of relativity?
This is the 11th round of the season with only two more afterwards, both in New York. Despite only three races to go, there are still 16 drivers who can win the title! Although, everyone is expecting that number to reduce significantly after today’s race.
Championship leader Jean-Eric Vergne did a superb job in qualifying and will start from pole ahead of the consistently impressive Mitch Evans. Sebastien Buemi starts from 3rd in front of Pascal Wehrlein 4th and Maximilian Gunther 5th. Lucas di Grassi, who’s currently 2nd in the championship, will start from down in 19th place.
As the drivers got underway, a number of incidents occurred between the grid and turn one. Jerome d’Ambrosio broke far too late, spun Robin Frijns completely around, and lightly tapped another car too. Meanwhile, compatriots Maximilian Gunther and Pascal Wehrlein made contact with the pair of them blocking the track completely. Red flag thrown. In the melee, Lucas di Grassi had jumped up from 19th to 8th! However, the race director ruled that as the cars never got as far as the first timing line before the red flag was thrown, it was impossible to fairly determine the order, so the decision was taken for the restart to be based on the original grid order.
The restart was a rolling start, so any chaos was avoided this time around. As the race progressed, there were more overtakes than people expected on this extremely tight circuit (including a stunning move by Sam Bird around the outside of Gunther). The race ended up being hugely exciting, aided by a late rain shower with two minutes to go, but it didn’t end up impacting the final order.
Jean-Eric Vergne came through to win his third race of the season ahead of a strong 2nd place for Mitch Evans. The New Zealander was hustling Vergne for the whole race but he could not quite find a way through. Sebastien Buemi finished 3rd – it’s very nice to see the Swiss driver score a podium at his home event. Meanwhile, Andre Lotterer finished 4th. The top four drivers finished within 1.106 seconds of each other; incredible! Sam Bird had a solid race and scored 10 points for 5th (plus one for fastest lap). In 6th was Gunther ahead of Daniel Abt, Alexander Lynn, Felipe Massa and Lucas di Grassi.
Suddenly, Jean-Eric Vergne has a commanding lead in the championship. The Frenchman is 32 points clear of team mate Andre Lotterer with a maximum of just 58 points remaining. In third place is Lucas di Grassi, one point behind Lotterer. Realistically, the champion will come from those three drivers – although others are still mathematically in the hunt.
As for the teams’ championship, Techeetah lead the way with 228 points ahead of Audi on 170. Anyone remember a late charge from Audi last season to snatch the title from Techeetah? Will history repeat itself? Let us know your predictions in the comments below.
On we go for the final two rounds in New York on 13th & 14th of July.