Berlin ePrix: Abt heads Audi 1-2, Vergne extends lead

Daniel Abt converted pole into a dominant win in Berlin ahead of his teammate Lucas di Grassi, as Audi became the second Formula E team to secure a one-two result.

Berlin ePrix: Abt heads Audi 1-2, Vergne extends lead

Techeetah’s Jean-Eric Vergne extended his championship lead with third place, while his closest title rival Sam Bird (DS Virgin Racing) finished seventh.

At the start, Abt comfortably led away from pole as his fellow front row-starter Oliver Turvey had to defend hard from Vergne on the run to the near-circular Turns 1-2 complex.

Jerome d’Ambrosio made a late move to the outside to jump ahead of Vergne from fourth on the grid and ran third in the opening laps before being shuffled down the order.

Abt began to pull clear of Turvey as di Grassi passed d’Ambrosio and charged after the top three.

Di Grassi passed Vergne and Turvey with successive late lunges down the inside of the Turn 6 hairpin on laps 11 and 12 of the 45-lap race – with Buemi making his way by the standings leader to take fourth with his own dive down the inside of the Turn 9 hairpin moments after di Grassi’s move.

By this stage, Abt had built up a 3.9s lead at the head of the race, which he marshalled for the rest of the first stint.

Turvey was the first of the leaders to pit on lap 22, with the Audi drivers, Buemi and Vergne coming in one tour later.

It was here that Abt’s chances of winning looked most perilous as he was forced to wait for Buemi to enter his pitbox before he could return to the track, which allowed di Grassi to cut his lead to 0.6s.

It looked as though the reigning champion would mount a challenge for the win, but Abt was able to re-establish his lead and pulled away from di Grassi throughout the second stint, setting the fastest lap on lap 26 to take maximum points from his home race.

Abt came home 6.758s clear to take his second FE win after his Mexico City triumph earlier in season four.

Vergne, who had barged his way by Buemi at Turn 1 just before the pitstops, battled his way back to third after losing out to the Renault e.dams driver during the car swap sequence.

The duo erased a 6.8s gap to Turvey in the first half of the second stint, with Buemi passing the NIO driver with a late move at the final corner on lap 33, with Vergne following him through.

Vergne then attacked Buemi at the Turn 6 hairpin on the next tour, seizing the advantage with a late switch to the inside to seal the final podium spot.

Buemi therefore finished fourth ahead of Turvey and Jaguar’s Mitch Evans and Bird, who rose from ninth and 10th on the grid respectively.

Bird’s result means Vergne’s lead is up to 40 points with three races of the season remaining.

Maro Engel claimed eighth for Venturi as Andre Lotterer, who started last and had to serve a 10-second penalty at his pitstop, and Nick Heidfeld took advantage of a late multi-car scrap involving Nelson Piquet Jr and Jose Maria Lopez, which left them 12th and 18th, to round out the top 10.

Felix Rosenqvist finished 11th after running very wide at the first corner as he went a long way to the outside of the leaders.

The Mahindra driver, third in the standings, nearly spun onto the run-off at the exit of the long left-hander but kept his car out of the barriers.

He battled his way back up the order but has now fallen to 76 points behind Vergne in the standings. D’Ambrosio eventually came home 19th for Dragon.

Race results:

shares
comments
Abt keeps Berlin pole after power mode infraction

Previous article

Abt keeps Berlin pole after power mode infraction

Next article

Vergne says Audi "in a different league" in Berlin

Vergne says Audi "in a different league" in Berlin
Load comments
How motorsport's most prominent power couple found joint success Prime

How motorsport's most prominent power couple found joint success

The Wolffs have carved their own paths in motorsport, leading their respective teams to success in Formula 1 and Formula E. But the two came together last month as their drivers finished first and second in the FE drivers' championship - a feat they are hugely proud of. In a rare joint interview, they reflect on a remarkable season

The top 10 Formula E drivers of 2020-21 Prime

The top 10 Formula E drivers of 2020-21

OPINION: The 2021 Formula E campaign was one without a narrative for much of the season, with no single car or driver able to break away from the pack. That makes choosing a top 10 especially difficult, particularly as the qualifying format meant some worthy performers were unable to enjoy their day in the sun.

Formula E
Sep 19, 2021
How Mercedes and de Vries achieved Formula E glory the hard way Prime

How Mercedes and de Vries achieved Formula E glory the hard way

When Nyck de Vries dominated the first race of what would be the most controversial and unpredictable Formula E season to date, it looked as though Mercedes was in for a cakewalk. But as the campaign wore on, the path to a title double became increasingly rocky. Neither driver or team would be assured of the crown until the closing stages of the very final race on a weekend of struggle in Berlin.

Formula E
Sep 17, 2021
The Formula E 'loan' deal that will keep di Grassi winning Prime

The Formula E 'loan' deal that will keep di Grassi winning

OPINION: The departure of Audi from Formula E meant its long-time driver Lucas di Grassi would need to find a new berth to stay on the grid. His deal at Venturi Racing will ensure the championship's first-ever race winner will remain competitive into the final year of the current Gen2 ruleset - although it may not be a long-term fit

Formula E
Sep 15, 2021
The problems laid bare by Mercedes' impending Formula E departure Prime

The problems laid bare by Mercedes' impending Formula E departure

Mercedes' planned withdrawal from Formula E at the end of the 2022 season will contribute to the big hole left by fellow automotive manufacturers Audi and BMW on their departures. Although the team may stick around under a different guise, the exit of the now-reigning teams' champion underlines FE's current issues...

Formula E
Aug 18, 2021
The F1 dilemma facing Mercedes' new world champion Prime

The F1 dilemma facing Mercedes' new world champion

After clinching the Formula E title at the Berlin finale, Nyck de Vries is a driver in demand. Although Mercedes would love to keep a reigning champion at the team, the allure of a Williams F1 drive may be too much for de Vries to ignore should a potential deal come to pass

Formula E
Aug 17, 2021
How de Vries claimed Formula E title glory as Mercedes exit bombshell looms Prime

How de Vries claimed Formula E title glory as Mercedes exit bombshell looms

As Formula E lined up to complete its seventh season at Berlin's Tempelhof Airport, all eyes were on who would be its first official FIA world champion. Despite Nyck de Vries' title lead heading into the weekend looking all but secure, the Dutchman held on - and enjoyed a good dollop of fortune - to secure a championship double for Mercedes

Formula E
Aug 16, 2021
Why Audi was right and wrong in Formula E's loophole row Prime

Why Audi was right and wrong in Formula E's loophole row

OPINION: With Audi's Formula E exit imminent, it had nothing to lose in London by attempting to vault Lucas di Grassi into the lead by pitting him under the safety car. Scorn directed at the team for putting glory before ethics should instead be pointed at a rulebook that allowed such a move in the first place.

Formula E
Jul 28, 2021