07/25/2021 Reading Time: 1 min

Formula E: Comeback in London

Fans in London and in front of their televisions all around the world saw Formula E’s spectacular return to London: for the first time, the all-electric world championship started on a layout with a mixture of indoor and outdoor parts around the ExCeL Arena in the east of the UK capital. Heavy rain on Saturday made for unpredictable track conditions and a lottery in qualifying. The result: a mixed starting grid with Lucas di Grassi ending up fastest in his qualifying group and in 7th place on the grid. Teammate René Rast qualified in 13th.

Audi e-tron FE07 on the racetrack

Rast and di Grassi finish in the top six

René Rast made up a few positions right after the start and moved up into the points. Together with Lucas di Grassi, the German drove a clean race, taking turns with his teammate while trying to overtake rivals. “It was a good day today, but also a crazy race,” says René Rast, who finished fifth. “I lost some parts in a few touches at the start, plus my steering was a little bent, but we still made up eight places.”
 

Lucas di Grassi was unlucky during both of his attack mode activations, because he twice got stuck behind a competitor. “Sometimes we gained positions, then lost them again. That’s why we didn’t get as far ahead as we had hoped,” says the Brazilian. “Still, the points for sixth place today are extremely important.”

Audi e-tron FE07 on the racetrack

Strategy move almost pays off

Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler remained without points on Sunday. René Rast retired early after a collision that was not his fault. A strategic move that would have brought Lucas di Grassi victory only narrowly failed. The Brazilian had started from tenth place and was running in ninth after twelve laps. When an accident caused a safety car period, the team tried a strategy move: While the field stayed behind the unusally slow safety car on the start-finish straight, di Grassi drove through the pit lane, made a short stop in front of his garage, returned to the track in the lead and crossed finish line in first position.

 

“That was a good strategy by the team, which found an opportunity in the regulations and took advantage of it,” says Lucas di Grassi. “Given the close standings in the title fight, we didn’t want to leave any opportunity unused.” The only blemish: the Audi e-tron FE07 did not come to a complete stop in pit lane during its stop, which is required by the regulations. This is why di Grassi was handed a drive-through penalty and then later excluded from the classification.

“A disappointing day”

“Let’s be honest: It was a disappointing day for us today,” said Team Principal Allan McNish. “We tried a strategy move with Lucas that was allowed by the regulations and that other teams have done in the past, but unfortunately it didn’t work out one hundred percent and we accept the FIA stewards decisions. René was on his way to the front and was robbed of points by a collision.” After 13 of 15 races, Rast is in tenth place in the drivers’ standings with a 23-point gap to the leader, teammate di Grassi follows six points behind in 13th place. In the teams’ standings, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler is in sixth place.

Formula E London: Results documents to download

Race 1

1 page, EN

PDF

111.2 KB

Race 2

1 page, EN

PDF

110.8 KB

Standings

2 pages

PDF

155.1 KB

London

Audi e-tron FE07 on the racetrack
Lucas di Grassi in the Audi e-tron FE07
René Rast in the garage

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