Jean-Eric Vergne and André Lotterer led a landmark one-two finish for Techeetah/Michelin in the streets of Santiago, Chile, on Saturday. Sébastien Buemi (Renault-e.dams) was third, while the defending Formula E champion Lucas di Grassi (Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler) failed to get his 2017/2018 points tally off the ground.
The first E-Prix to be held in Santiago provided some entertaining action around the tight, bumpy, purpose-designed street circuit. A tangle at the start eliminated José-Maria Lopez (DS Virgin Racing) and delayed Nick Heidfeld (Mahindra Racing). After the ensuing safety car period, pole winner Jean-Eric Vergne (Techeetah) headed the field and remained in front until the mid-race car changes when, for the first time in ABB FIA Formula E Championship history, no minimum time was set for the swap. In the resulting rush to re-join, Sam Bird (DS Virgin Racing) and Buemi (Renault-e.dams) both dropped time.
Vergne shrugged off pressure from Lotterer (the two men actually collided shortly before the finish) to claim his second Formula E victory, while his German team-mate was next over the line to earn a one-two finish for the Chinese team.
An interesting battle opposed Sébastien Buemi (3
The result sees Vergne move to the top of the provisional Drivers’ standings, ahead of Felix Rosenqvist and Sam Bird who are covered by 10 points. Techeetah now also leads the Teams’ standings, two points clear of Mahindra Racing
The next round takes teams to Mexico City on March 3.