Formula E

Da Costa escapes from wild racing to win Berlin opener

Aug 5 2020

Antonio Felix da Costa stretched his Formula E championship lead with a commanding drive in the Berlin Tempelhof opener.

Da Costa and DS Techeetah team-mate Jean-Eric Vergne controlled much of the race, but in the closing stages da Costa was able to storm away as Vergne lost pace and started tumbling down through an increasingly chaotic pack.

DS Techeetah team radio traffic was fraught in the early stages, with Vergne raising questions over whether da Costa was respecting team protocols properly.

Amid that angst, the pair pulled eight seconds clear of third-placed Andre Lotterer and the rest of the pack before a safety car was called when Robin Frijns hit the wall while wheel-to-wheel with Maximilian Guenther.

Later in the race a full course yellow was called after Felipe Massa – who was beginning to fall back after running in the top 10 initially – slewed into the wall.

Vergne had taken his final shot of attack mode just before the yellow was called, so much of the extra power allowance ticked down under caution.

Da Costa then narrowly managed to hold his lead when he took his second dose of attack mode, banging wheels slightly with Vergne as he came back onto the normal line but staying around.

He stormed away thereafter, crossing the line just moments after his energy level hit 0%, and winning by five seconds.

Vergne began to rapidly lose ground, falling to eighth before being spun by Lucas di Grassi on the final lap and then pitting. He was classified 20th.

Sam Bird surged through from seventh on the grid to second with a series of incisive moves, but lost the place to Lotterer in a last-gasp battle.

Nyck de Vries was in podium contention throughout and finished a combative fourth, with his Mercedes team-mate Stoffel Vandoorne charging from 15th on the grid to fifth before being repassed by Mahindra’s Jerome d’Ambrosio at the end.

Nissan driver Sebastien Buemi slipped back from an early fight for third to finish seventh, ahead of Guenther’s BMW, di Grassi and Alexander Sims in the second BMW.

Mitch Evans’ Jaguar had been in this group before being sent spinning by Guenther while trying to pass Buemi. He fell to 15th.

Rene Rast started his Formula E return for Audi with 11th.

Race Results

Pos Name Team Car Laps Laps Led Total Time Fastest Lap Pitstops Pts
1 António Félix da Costa DS Techeetah DS E-Tense FE20 36 36 47m08.261s 1m08.965s 0 30
2 Andre Lotterer TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team Porsche 99X Electric 36 0 +5.445s 1m09.176s 0 18
3 Sam Bird Envision Virgin Racing Audi e-tron FE06 36 0 +6.526s 1m09.214s 0 15
4 Nyck de Vries Mercedes-Benz EQ Formula E Team Mercedes-Benz EQ Silver Arrow 01 36 0 +6.911s 1m09.601s 0 12
5 Jérôme d'Ambrosio Mahindra Racing Mahindra M6Electro 36 0 +13.212s 1m09.436s 0 10
6 Stoffel Vandoorne Mercedes-Benz EQ Formula E Team Mercedes-Benz EQ Silver Arrow 01 36 0 +13.654s 1m09.091s 0 8
7 Sébastien Buemi Nissan e.DAMS Nissan IM02 36 0 +14.926s 1m09.886s 0 6
8 Lucas Di Grassi Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler Formula E Team Audi e-tron FE06 36 0 +17.311s 1m09.07s 0 4
9 Alexander Sims BMW i Andretti Motorsport BMW iFE.20 36 0 +17.673s 1m09.465s 0 2
10 René Rast Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler Formula E Team Audi e-tron FE06 36 0 +18.852s 1m09.877s 0 1
11 Neel Jani TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team Porsche 99X Electric 36 0 +21.039s 1m09.946s 0 0
12 Alex Lynn Mahindra Racing Mahindra M6Electro 36 0 +21.603s 1m10.201s 0 0
13 Mitch Evans Panasonic Jaguar Racing Jaguar I-Type IV 36 0 +22.482s 1m09.355s 0 0
14 Oliver Rowland Nissan e.DAMS Nissan IM02 36 0 +23.208s 1m09.465s 0 0
15 James Calado Panasonic Jaguar Racing Jaguar I-Type IV 36 0 +28.906s 1m09.362s 0 0
16 Oliver Turvey NIO 333 FE Team NIO FE-005 36 0 +31.116s 1m10.327s 0 0
17 Edoardo Mortara ROKiT Venturi Racing Mercedes-Benz EQ Silver Arrow 01 36 0 +38.765s 1m09.363s 0 0
18 Daniel Abt NIO 333 FE Team NIO FE-005 36 0 +39.282s 1m09.879s 0 0
Jean-Eric Vergne DS Techeetah DS E-Tense FE20 36 0 DNC 1m09.025s 0 0
Nico Müller Geox Dragon Penske EV-4 36 0 DNC 1m09.565s 0 0
Felipe Massa ROKiT Venturi Racing Mercedes-Benz EQ Silver Arrow 01 22 0 DNF 1m10.29s 0 0
Robin Frijns Envision Virgin Racing Audi e-tron FE06 8 0 DNF 1m10.925s 0 0
Maximilian Günther BMW i Andretti Motorsport BMW iFE.20 36 0 DQ 1m09.971s 0 0
Sérgio Sette Câmara Geox Dragon Penske EV-4 36 0 DQ 1m10.042s 0 0
Antonio Felix da Costa DS Techeetah Berlin Formula E 2020

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