Formula E – Daniel Abt Takes Home Race Win for Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler

The ABB FIA Formula E Championship completed another round of the season in Berlin, Germany today (May 19, 2018). An eager crowd turned out at Tempelhof Airport to see their German drivers at the 2018 i Berlin E-Prix. They weren’t disappointed as they witnessed the hometown hero Daniel Abt take the race win.

Daniel Abt Takes Home Race Win for Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler

Daniel Abt, the Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler driver, took the checkered flag from Pole position. It was certainly a proud moment for the German team, as Lucas di Grassi came in second place.

Formula E Championship leader Jean-Eric Vergne of Techeetah finished third to round out the podium. Sebastien Buemi of Renault E.Dams came in fourth followed by Oliver Turvey of NIO Formula E team in fifth.

Race Start

The beginning of the race was rather clean. There was no contact between the drivers due to ample space out wide at Tempelhof Airport. Abt got a clean start from the line and wasn’t challenged by anyone the whole time. The German driver was able to pull away from the start to gain a large gap. Turvey lost time to Abt due to Vergne charging up the inside. Turvey had to defend from Vergne through the first sector of the track and maintained position.

Felix Rosenqvist of Mahindra Racing locked up badly into turn 1. Dropping him all the way back behind his teammate in P14. Buemi got a decent start off the line but wasn’t able to capitalize on the battle in front of him. Jerome D’Ambrosio of Dragon Racing was able to pass Vergne after his battle with Turvey and take P3. That was his highlight of the day, unfortunately. The Belgian driver gradually fell down the order in the laps that followed.

Di Grassi got an amazing start off the line and was able to keep his nose clean despite drivers on their brakes. The Brazilian showed his pace and passed all of them to take P2 after lap 13. By this point, Abt had already put a 3.9s lead over everyone else, which he managed until the pit stop period.

Pit Stops

Turvey pitted first on lap 22, while the rest of the leaders pitted a lap later. This was where Abt almost lost the entire race. Due to his lead, he was on pace to pull out while other cars were to come in. The German driver was forced to wait as Buemi pulled into his pit box. Di Grassi had a decent pit stop but was able to close the gap to less than a second after.
Buemi gained a position after the pitstop sequence was over. The Swiss driver was able to leapfrog Vergne to take P3.

Drivers in the Points

It looked as though Abt was within reach of the defending Formula E champion, di Grassi. Abt responded with the fastest lap of the day on lap 26. He continued that pace and finished 6.758s ahead of his teammate to take the win.

Vergne finished in P3 despite having to reclaim that position from Buemi. The Renault E.Dams driver followed behind in P4. Both were able to close the gap to Turvey and passed him on lap 33. Turvey, therefore, finished P5 while Mitch Evans of Panasonic Jaguar came in P6. The Kiwi driver had a great race, he started P9. Bird was some distance behind but finished P7.

The German Venturi driver Maro Engel came in P8. Followed by fellow German driver Andre Lotterer in P9. The Techeetah driver was given a 10-place grid penalty ahead of the race, so he started from P20. He also had to overcome a penalty given during his pitstop, which makes his P9 result amazing. The veteran German driver, Nick Heidfeld rounded out the points as he finished P10. The Mahindra Racing driver took advantage of a car scrap and made a brilliant move to take the position.

Drivers out of the Points

Rosenqvist couldn’t overcome his first lap mistake and finished in P11. The Swedish driver made up four positions once he dropped back, narrowly missing the points. Nelson Piquet Jr of Panasonic Jaguar Racing followed him in P12. He was hoping for points, but he got tangled up with Jose Maria Lopez of Dragon Racing who finished P18.

The replacement Venturi Formula E team driver, Tom Dillmann finished P13. However, he started in P12 and overall lost a position on the day. The French driver would have wanted a better result, but he had no experience with this car. He kept the car intact and came away with a decent result. Dillmann was followed up by Nico Prost of Renault E.Dams in P14. Followed by MS&AD Andretti Autosport’s Antonio Felix da Costa. Da Costa started P17 so he did okay today.

Alex Lynn of DS Virgin Racing had a disappointing day and finished P16. He hasn’t had the best of seasons so far in his first year. Luca Fillipi of NIO Formula E came in P17. Jose Maria Lopez and d’Ambrosio of Dragon Racing came in P18 and P19 respectively. Lastly, making his season four debut, Stephane Sarrazin rounded out the grid in P20 for MS&AD Andretti Autosport.

Formula E Gen2 Car

Former Formula 1 World Champion Nico Rosberg took the Formula E Gen2 car out for a spin today. As he took the car around the Tempelhof Airport circuit, he locked up into turn one. He almost went off track but he soon loved it. The audience was onboard the whole time and he had a few moments where he was driving cautiously. He almost scraped the wall but he eventually came to grips with it. By lap two, he asked how to adjust the brake bias and you could tell he was trying to get quicker. It was his first time in a single seater since Abu Dhabi in 2016 in Formula 1.

Final Results

Pos Driver Team Car Laps Gap
1 Daniel Abt Audi Audi 45 55m35.546s
2 Lucas di Grassi Audi Audi 45 6.758s
3 Jean-Eric Vergne Techeetah Renault 45 12.894s
4 Sebastien Buemi e.dams Renault 45 17.282s
5 Oliver Turvey NIO NextEV NIO 45 19.620s
6 Mitch Evans Jaguar Jaguar 45 24.586s
7 Sam Bird Virgin DS Virgin 45 34.610s
8 Maro Engel Venturi Venturi 45 37.814s
9 Andre Lotterer Techeetah Renault 45 44.359s
10 Nick Heidfeld Mahindra Mahindra 45 45.931s
11 Felix Rosenqvist Mahindra Mahindra 45 46.381s
12 Nelson Piquet Jr. Jaguar Jaguar 45 49.087s
13 Tom Dillmann Venturi Venturi 45 50.150s
14 Nicolas Prost e.dams Renault 45 50.381s
15 Antonio Felix da Costa Andretti Andretti 45 52.715s
16 Alex Lynn Virgin DS Virgin 45 53.000s
17 Luca Filippi NIO NextEV NIO 45 53.302s
18 Jose Maria Lopez Dragon Penske 45 53.611s
19 Jerome d’Ambrosio Dragon Penske 45 54.289s
20 Stephane Sarrazin Andretti Andretti 45 1m06.954s

Driver Standings

Pos Driver Points
1 Jean-Eric Vergne 162
2 Sam Bird 122
3 Felix Rosenqvist 86
4 Daniel Abt 85
5 Sebastien Buemi 82
6 Lucas di Grassi 76
7 Mitch Evans 51
8 Nelson Piquet Jr. 45
9 Oliver Turvey 44
10 Andre Lotterer 43
11 Edoardo Mortara 29
12 Maro Engel 27
13 Nick Heidfeld 22
14 Alex Lynn 17
15 Antonio Felix da Costa 16
16 Jose Maria Lopez 14
17 Jerome d’Ambrosio 12
18 Nicolas Prost 7
19 Tom Blomqvist 4
20 Luca Filippi 1
21 Tom Dillmann 0
22 Kamui Kobayashi 0
23 Ma Qing Hua 0
24 Neel Jani 0
25 Stephane Sarrazin 0

Team Standings

Pos Team Points
1 Techeetah 205
2 Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler 161
3 DS Virgin Racing 139
4 Mahindra Racing 108
5 Panasonic Jaguar Racing 96
6 Renault e.Dams 89
7 Venturi Formula E Team 56
8 NIO Formula E team 45
9 Dragon Racing 26
10 MS&AD Andretti Formula E 20

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