50th Formula E race: Edoardo Mortara takes his maiden victory
Formula E celebrated its 50th race today at the streets of Hong Kong. The Hong Kong ePrix was the fifth race of the 2018-2019 Formula E Championship season and the victory went to the Italian driver Edoardo Mortara (Venturi). It’s his maiden FE victory in his 14th start in the world’s premier electric racing championship.
Mortara inherited a victory after provisional winner Sam Bird (Virgin Racing) was penalized because of his contact with Andre Lotterer (Techeetah) in the last lap of the race. Lotterer was in the lead when Bird’s car made a contact with a back of his car, puncturing the right-rear tyre and leaving Lotterer helpless on the track.
Lucas di Grassi (Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler) was the third man on the podium and he was promoted to P2 after Bird’s post-race penalty. Robin Frijns (Virgin Racing) has been moved from P4 to P3, what was his second podium finish of the year. Bird’s five-second penalty moved him to P6. His team appealed the penalty so the results are still not official.
Sam Bird’s controversial move and eventual penalty didn’t prevent him from taking the sole lead in the championship. He would be in the big championship lead even if he finished second behind Lotterer but he ruined that result with an incident. Now, he’s just one point ahead of previous leader Jerome d’Ambrosio (Mahindra Racing), who didn’t finish the race today. He crashed into the stricken car of Felipe Nasr at Turn 2 during the first-lap, retiring from race together with Nasr and Pascal Wehrlein.
The race was red-flagged while the cars were removed. Oliver Rowland was the leader at the restart but he dropped to P10 with some technical issues, handing the lead to Sam Bird and Andre Lotterer behind him. Bird and Lotterer changed their positions several times and fought fiercely until the incident on the last lap.
Photos: Formula E,