Vergne secures the Championship in New York as Di Grassi wins


Jean-Eric Vergne has won the 2017/2018 championship after a fantastic drive through the field from 19th to 5th place to secure his first Formula E championship.

The Frenchman had to fight back after seeing his qualifying times deleted for using 205kW, rather than the allowed 200kW.

The Techeetah driver passed Sam Bird – his main championship rival – on lap 16 after saving energy in the early laps, which he then used to fight his way through the field before the pit stop window.

Andre Lotterer – Vergne’s team-mate – also forced his way through the field in the early stages and worked his way up to 5th place.

With Bird in 9th place, Lotterer allowed Vergne through to move the Frenchmen into 5th place, which was enough to claim the championship with one race to spare.

At the front of the field, there was an entertaining battle between the two Audi drivers which was won by Lucas Di Grassi who secured victory in New York with Daniel Abt in second.

Abt was leading the race after passing Sebastien Buemi on lap 7 of 43 and took control of the race, while Di Grassi started in 11th and forced his way into second place before the pit stop window.

After the pit stop window, Di Grassi got a good run into Turn 1 and passed Abt. Abt tried to fight back, but was given an order called “code 100.” This order turned out to be a hold station call which frustrated Abt on the team radio.

Sebastien Buemi was able to hold onto third place after starting from pole position, with Tom Dillmann putting himself into the driver market after a superb drive to finish in fourth.

Dillmann is replacing Edorado Mortara who is racing in the DTM championship this weekend in Zandvoort.

Vergne finished in fifth with Heidfeld in sixth for Mahindra. Lotterer was running in sixth, but a mistake dropped the German to seventh place.

Maro Engel finished in eighth place in front of Bird who struggled in New York. The Brit had a chance to move into eighth place after a late safety car caused by his team-mate Alex Lynn.

Lynn lost the rear of the car at the final corner, which is a quick left-hander. The Brit smashed into the barrier rearwards ending his race.

Despite the safety car causing the field to bunch up. Bird couldn’t pass Engel for the eighth place he needed to keep the championship alive into the final race of the season on Sunday.

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