Da Costa wins Monaco Formula E thriller with last-lap pass - The Race
Formula E

Da Costa wins Monaco Formula E thriller with last-lap pass

May 8 2021
By Matt Beer

Antonio Felix da Costa claimed the first victory of his Formula E title defence with a last-lap pass on Mitch Evans in a brilliant first race on the full Monaco Grand Prix layout.

DS Techeetah driver Da Costa had lost his pole advantage early on when Envision Virgin’s Robin Frijns dived past him into Sainte Devote on the third lap.

The champion was able to retake the lead by taking his first attack mode early, gaining ground by leaping past Jean-Eric Vergne and Evans in one go as they tripped over each other through the chicane, and then closing in on Frijns sufficiently to reclaim first place when the Envision Virgin went for attack mode.

But that also meant Frijns had little trouble repassing da Costa using his extra power soon afterwards.

Frijns was first of the lead contenders to take a second attack mode. He only lost one place to da Costa and was almost immediately back past the DS Techeetah on the road with his power advantage.

Even after both had used all their attack modes though, da Costa had the advantage of a Fanboost deployment still in hand – and used it to storm back past Frijns into the lead at the tunnel exit.

But Evans had left his final attack mode late and was using it to surge into contention while his rivals were all back to normal power.

He swept past Frijns on the pits straight and then moments later grabbed the lead from da Costa with a remarkable move into Massenet.

That charge had come at a price for Evans, though. After a safety car – caused by Rene Rast crashing at Sainte Devote while trying to pass Nick Cassidy for seventh – paused proceedings, Evans took the restart with 1% less useable energy than his rivals.

He admitted over Jaguar team radio that it would be tough to hold the pack off, but he managed to do so with some canny driving until the very last lap.

Da Costa got a run through the tunnel and went to the outside, locked his brakes and dived past Evans to take the lead with half a lap to go.

Frijns emerged from the fraught final corners in second ahead of Evans, and takes the championship lead.

Vergne lost ground by failing to trigger attack mode when he first went to take it and so having to try again later, but he used the late power boost to charge back to fourth ahead of Maximilian Guenther and Oliver Rowland.

Sam Bird made great progress from 16th on the grid to seventh in the second Jaguar ahead of Cassidy. Andre Lotterer was ninth on the road but will drop to 17th with a five-second penalty for a collision with Lucas di Grassi, who moves up to 10th behind Alex Lynn as a result.

It was a terrible race for Mercedes and its title chasers Nyck de Vries and Stoffel Vandoorne, though de Vries is still second in the championship behind Frijns.

After qualifying only 23rd, de Vries took a penalty for component changes then slowed to a halt on track before Tabac late on.

Vandoorne lost more ground in a multi-car first-lap tangle and finished only 21st.

Race Results

Pos Name Team Car Laps Laps Led Total Time Fastest Lap Pitstops Pts
1 AntĂłnio FĂ©lix da Costa DS Techeetah DS E-Tense FE21 26 6 47m20.697s 1m35.173s 0 28
2 Robin Frijns Envision Virgin Racing Audi e-tron FE07 26 13 +2.848s 1m35.315s 0 19
3 Mitch Evans Jaguar Racing Jaguar I-Type 5 26 7 +2.872s 1m35.298s 0 15
4 Jean-Eric Vergne DS Techeetah DS E-Tense FE21 26 0 +3.12s 1m34.697s 0 13
5 Maximilian GĂĽnther BMW i Andretti Motorsport BMW iFE.21 26 0 +3.27s 1m35.371s 0 10
6 Oliver Rowland Nissan e.DAMS Nissan IM02 26 0 +3.865s 1m35.156s 0 8
7 Sam Bird Jaguar Racing Jaguar I-Type 5 26 0 +4.15s 1m35.133s 0 6
8 Nick Cassidy Envision Virgin Racing Audi e-tron FE07 26 0 +4.752s 1m35.864s 0 4
9 Alex Lynn Mahinda Racing Mahindra M7Electro 26 0 +5.759s 1m35.709s 0 2
10 Lucas Di Grassi Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler Audi e-tron FE07 26 0 +6.225s 1m34.708s 0 1
11 SĂ©bastien Buemi Nissan e.DAMS Nissan IM02 26 0 +6.567s 1m35.801s 0 0
12 Edoardo Mortara RokIT Venturi Racing Mercedes-EQ Silver Arrow 02 26 0 +7.097s 1m35.852s 0 0
13 Norman Nato RokIT Venturi Racing Mercedes-EQ Silver Arrow 02 26 0 +8.507s 1m36.089s 0 0
14 Tom Blomqvist NIO 333 Formula E Team NIO 333 001 26 0 +9.24s 1m35.904s 0 0
15 Sérgio Sette Câmara Dragon / Penske Autosport Penske EV-4 26 0 +9.499s 1m35.937s 0 0
16 Jake Dennis BMW i Andretti Motorsport BMW iFE.21 26 0 +9.822s 1m35.151s 1 0
17 André Lotterer TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Porsche 99X Electric 26 0 +10.503s 1m35.012s 0 0
18 Nico MĂĽller Dragon / Penske Autosport Penske EV-4 26 0 +11.45s 1m36.026s 0 0
19 Oliver Turvey NIO 333 Formula E Team NIO 333 001 26 0 +12.067s 1m35.619s 0 0
Nyck de Vries Mercedes-Benz EQ Mercedes-EQ Silver Arrow 02 23 0 DNF 1m36.102s 2 0
Stoffel Vandoorne Mercedes-Benz EQ Mercedes-EQ Silver Arrow 02 21 0 DNF 1m34.428s 1 0
Pascal Wehrlein TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Porsche 99X Electric 21 0 DNF 1m35.717s 1 0
René Rast Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler Audi e-tron FE07 18 0 DNF 1m34.586s 0 0
Alexander Sims Mahinda Racing Mahindra M7Electro 0 0 DNF 0s 1 0

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