Berlin ePrix: Maiden victory for Rosenqvist and Mahindra Racing
Felix Rosenqvist scored his maiden Formula E victory after winning the first race of the Berlin ePrix at old Tempelhof Airport circuit. At the same time, this is a maiden victory for the Mahindra Racing team in the championship.
The qualifying was one of the most exciting in the history of the series. Lucas di Grassi won pole position beating Jose Maria Lopez by just 0.001s. The Mahindra Racing drivers Felix Rosenqvist and Nick Heidfeld started from the second row at the slightly changed circuit, while the reigning champion and standings leader Sebastien Buemi was able just for the 14th starting position after having handling troubles with his car.
Lopez had a terrible start and immediately dropped to the 4th spot after being overtaken by Rosenqvist and Heidfeld. Daniel Abt started well as he moved up from the 8th to the 6th position. Before the pit stop Di Grassi had a small advantage to Mahindra and DS Virgin cars while Buemi struggled to get into the points.
However, Rosenqvist did a nice maneuver to take the lead from the Brazilian just before going to the pit. Both Mahindra drivers and Di Grassi pitted at the same time, so the standings remained unchanged. The Swede led the race, Di Grassi was second and Heidfeld third, while Lopez and Jean-Eric Vergne battled for the 4th position.
Rosenqvist did a great job with the new car and extended his lead to Di Grassi who made a mistake by using FanBoost too early. At the end, the Mahindra driver was well ahead of the series vice-champion while Heidfeld completed a fine day for the Indian team after finishing 3rd for the third race in a row.
The second race of the Berlin ePrix is scheduled for Sunday, 16.00 CET.