Formula E - D’Ambrosio wins in Marrakesh with dramatic last lap dash as BMW pair collide | Federation Internationale de l'Automobile

Formula E - D’Ambrosio wins in Marrakesh with dramatic last lap dash as BMW pair collide

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12.01.19

Mahindra Racing driver sprints to grandstand finish in Morocco 

Jerome D’Ambrosio sprinted to victory in a dramatic last lap dash to the finish in Marrakesh, after a late safety car bunched up the pack following a collision between BMW i Andretti Motorsport pairing Antonio Felix da Costa and Alexander Sims.

Despite picking up his third victory in Formula E, it’s the first time D’Ambrosio has actually stood on the top step of the podium - having benefitted from a post-race disqualification on both previous occasions.

The win marks his first win since the Mexico City E-Prix in 2016 - and his first in MAHINDRA RACING colours. D’Ambrosio started down the field in 10th, but steadily progressed up the ranks to find himself sat behind the leading BMW duo.

With less than 10-minutes left on the countdown clock, Da Costa and Sims looked set to bring home a one-two for the team - topping off a perfect start to the season after a win last time out in Ad Diriyah.

However, it wasn’t to be - as a moment of madness cost the team a large points haul. Sims - who was on the tail of his team-mate for the duration of the race - pulled alongside Da Costa into the braking zone of Turn 7 in an attempt to snatch the lead.

Both drivers locked-up and touched with neither making the corner. The coming together and slow recovery back to the racing line dropped Sims to fourth. But Da Costa came off worse with his race ending parked-up in the run-off area after contact with the barrier.

With the cars lined-up in close formation, the safety car pulled in as the clock hit zero - leaving one lap to the chequered flag. Running wide over the kerb in the final corner - D’Ambrosio gave the fans a grandstand finish with Robin Frijns chasing him to the line.

Frijns was joined on the podium by Envision Virgin Racing team-mate Sam Bird, who started on pole position and tangled with reigning champion Jean-Eric Vergne on the run down to Turn 1.

Vergne lined-up on the front row alongside Bird and made an ambitious dive up the inside through the long left-hander. The pair made contact and Vergne was sent spinning ahead of a flurry of oncoming traffic. From last, Vergne valiantly fought back to fifth.

Adrenaline still flowing after an exhilarating race, there’s not long to wait for another episode of electric street racing with the Santiago E-Prix on 26 January - round three of the 2018/19 ABB FIA Formula E Championship.

Jerome D’Ambrosio said: “The race was really hard-fought and incredibly intense. At least that’s what it felt like from inside the cockpit. I knew I could achieve a top five result as the race pace was amazing in Ad Diriyah and here also. A couple of things played out to our advantage and winning this race means a lot for the team and the hard work over the past few weeks. We enjoy tonight, but tomorrow we get back to work.”

Robin Frijns said: “It was an exciting race, but the start was a bit of a mess. The only thing I saw was smoke and I didn’t see any cars. It was really a great day for the team - ending up in second and getting two cars on the podium. Being in this position for the first time with the team, I thought the points were more valuable then risking everything with Jerome.”

Sam Bird said: “After getting hit from behind, I felt like I was nursing the car and had a bit of an issue. I didn’t feel very competitive in a straight line today, but that’s how it goes. We collectively got an amazing result for the team and we show paced in qualifying, which is promising. As one of the only customer teams, what we’re doing is really impressive. Without any testing, I wonder how competitive we’ll be in a few races time.”

Race Result - 2018/19 ABB FIA Formula E Championship - Marrakesh E-Prix

1

Jerome D’Ambrosio

MAHINDRA RACING

46:45.884s

(25)

2

Robin Frijns

Envision Virgin Racing

+0.143s

(18)

3

Sam Bird

Envision Virgin Racing

+0.461s

(18)

4

Alexander Sims

BMW i Andretti Motorsport

+0.740s

(12)

5

Jean-Eric Vergne

DS TECHEETAH

+1.232s

(10)

6

Andre Lotterer

DS TECHEETAH

+1.457s

(8)

7

Lucas di Grassi

Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler

+1.633s

(7)

8

Sebastien Buemi

Nissan e.dams

+2.455s

(4)

9

Mitch Evans

Panasonic Jaguar Racing

+2.980s

(2)

10

Daniel Abt

Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler

+4.014s

(1)

11

Jose Maria Lopez

GEOX DRAGON

+4.528s

 

12

Maximilian Gunther

GEOX DRAGON

+6.034s

 

13

Edoardo Mortara

VENTURI Formula E Team

+6.790s

 

14

Nelson Piquet Jr.

Panasonic Jaguar Racing

+6.833s

 

15

Oliver Rowland

Nissan e.dams

+7.529s

 

16

Oliver Turvey

NIO Formula E Team

+9.241s

 

17

Tom Dillmann

NIO Formula E Team

+9.665s

 

18

Felipe Massa

VENTURI Formula E Team

+10.250s

 

 

 

 

 

 

DNF

Antonio Felix da Costa

BMW i Andretti Motorsport

25 Laps

 

DNF

Gary Paffett

HWA RACELAB

3 Laps

 

DNF

Pascal Wehrlein

MAHINDRA RACING

1 Lap

 

DNF

Stoffel Vandoorne

HWA RACELAB

1 Lap

 


Driver standings:

Jerome D’Ambrosio

MAHINDRA RACING

40

Antonio Felix da Costa

BMW i Andretti Motorsport

28

Jean-Eric Vergne

DS TECHEETAH

28

Andre Lotterer

DS TECHEETAH

19

Robin Frijns

Envision Virgin Racing

18

Sam Bird

Envision Virgin Racing

18

Mitch Evans

Panasonic Jaguar Racing

14

Alexander Sims

BMW i Andretti Motorsport

12

Sebastien Buemi

Nissan e.dams

12

Lucas di Grassi

Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler

9

Oliver Rowland

Nissan e.dams

6

Daniel Abt

Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler

5

Nelson Piquet Jr.

Panasonic Jaguar Racing

1

Jose Maria Lopez

GEOX DRAGON

0

Maximilian Gunther

GEOX DRAGON

0

Oliver Turvey

NIO Formula E Team

0

Edoardo Mortara

VENTURI Formula E Team

0

Tom Dillmann

NIO Formula E Team

0

Stoffel Vandoorne

HWA RACELAB

0

Felipe Massa

VENTURI Formula E Team

0

Felix Rosenqvist

MAHINDRA RACING

0

Gary Paffett

HWA RACELAB

0

Pascal Wehrlein

MAHINDRA RACING

0


Team standings:

DS TECHEETAH

47

MAHINDRA RACING

40

BMW i Andretti Motorsport

40

Envision Virgin Racing

36

Nissan e.dams

18

Panasonic Jaguar Racing

15

Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler

14

GEOX DRAGON

0

NIO Formula E Team

0

VENTURI Formula E Team

0

HWA RACELAB

0