With the inaugural season of the Formula E series landing in Monaco earlier in the month, electric racing has finally come home. After a quick and close race through Monaco’s narrow streets, Formula E headed to Germany this weekend for the DHL Berlin ePrix, where Brazil’s Lucas di Grassi though he took the win…but then officials took a closer look at his car.
Lucas di Grassi led the field for most of the race, as one of his main opponents Sebastian Buemi fought off a number of contenders for second place. In the pits, Buemi would get passed by Jerome d’Ambrosio of Dragon Racing, who managed to hold onto the second spot all the way through the end of the race. Initially, it looked like di Grassi, d’Ambrosio, and Buemi would place first, second, and third respectively.
Post-race inspections to di Grassi’s car revealed illegal modifications to both the left and right front wheel fairings, which had prohibited metal reinforcements to them. In addition, body filler closed off six of eight .holes on the front spoiler, while the front flap and gurney also had a layer of filler added. While the Abt Racing team swore that the modifications were made to repair damage, rather than gain a competitive advantage, officials ultimately decided to exclude di Grassi’s performance from the race as the Spark-built chassis was not to be modified in any way.
That gave d’Ambrosio the win, Buemi second place, and Lovic Duval third place, which shakes up the points standings considerably. di Grassi falls from first place to third, with Nelson Piquet now leading the points, followed by Buemi. Nicolas Prost and d’Ambrosio round out the top five, confirming what I have been saying; it’s still anybody’s championship, even with just two races left.
This is how racing should be, clean, close, and competitive to a fault.