Formula E: Sam Bird claims victory in opening round as Alex Sims clinches maiden win in Saudi Diriyah E-Prix

Formula E: Sam Bird claims victory in opening round as Alex Sims clinches maiden win in Saudi Diriyah E-Prix

Friday 22nd Nov – Race 1

Audi-powered Bird clinches first win in Saudi, leading Porsche and Mercedes

Starting on Pole, BMW i Andretti Motorsport’s Alex Sims pulled away as the lights went out on the season opener in Saudi Arabia, leaving both Mercedes-Benz EQ drivers Stoffel Vandoorne and Nyck de Vries in second and third.

After five minutes, the ATTACK MODE activation zone opened up, with all 24 drivers now able to pass through the ATTACK MODE Activation Zone – located off the racing line – in order to pick up a 35kW power boost during the race.

Sam Bird (GBR), Envision Virgin Racing, 1st position, Andre Lotterer (DEU), Tag Heuer Porsche, 2nd position, and Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL), Mercedes Benz EQ Formula, 3rd position

Just five minutes into the race, disaster struck for Nissan e.dams’ Sebastien Buemi who stopped on track while the grid passed by. Unable to restart his car, the Swiss driver retired from the race.

After a number of attempts from Envision Virgin Racing’s Sam Bird to pass Rokit Venturi Racing’s Edoardo Mortara and move towards a podium finish, the Brit passed the Swiss driver with 30 minutes left on the clock.

Moving up from 16, Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler’s Daniel Abt passed NIO 333’s Oliver Turvey in a bid to improve the German manufacturers start to the season. Moments later, Mahindra Racing’s Pascal Wehrlein (in 12th) clocked the fastest lap.

Still locked into 11th, reigning champion and DS Techeetah driver Jean-Eric Vergne showed no sign of making his way into the points. With two titles to his name, the pressure is on for the Frenchman as he looks to clinch a third at the end of the 2019/20 season.

Leading the way, Alex Sims kept the two Mercedes drivers at bay in his BWM as the German powerhouses battled for the win. Close behind was Sam Bird in his Audi-powered Envision Virgin Racing challenger, followed by TAG Heuer Porsche’s Andre Lotterer in fifth.

With 17 minutes left of the race, reigning champ Vergne retired, returning to the pits with damage to the front wheel of his car.

Coming off the start/finish straight, a patient Vandoorne made his move on race leader Sims, taking the lead through Turn 18 and 19. At the same time, Bird attacked, passing Sims to move into second. Dropping back further still, Lotterer moved into third, knocking Sims off a potential podium finish.

Not content with a second place finish, Bird attacked Vandoorne with ten minutes remaining. Taking the lead in his Audi-powered car, the Brit handed it to new entrants Mercedes and Porsche as Lotterer remained in third.

After working his way up the grid, Nissan e.dams’ Oliver Rowland advanced on Sims in fourth, passing the BMW driver with six minutes to spare. Coming into Turn 5, Audi’s Daniel Abt failed to stop his car after a collision with Antonio Felix da Costa (BMW) and was left stranded after colliding with the wall.

With only three minutes left, the BMW i8 Safety Car was deployed while the German’s car was collected until the race restarted with just over a minute to go.

Bird, maintaining his lead, held out to collect the first win of the season after a spectacular race from the Envision Virgin Racing driver. Trailing the Brit in his Audi was Porsche’s Andre Lotterer in second, followed by Mercedes’ Stoffel Vandoorne in third.

Alexander Sims (GBR) BMW I Andretti Motorsports, BMW iFE.20, celebrates on the podium with Maximilian Günther (DEU), BMW I Andretti Motorsports, BMW iFE.20, and Lucas Di Grassi (BRA), Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler, Audi e-tron FE06

Saturday 23 Nov- Race 2

With the lights out, it was Poleman BMW i Andretti Motorsport’s Alex Sims who pulled away in the lead after securing his second Pole in a row on day two of the 2019 SAUDIA Diriyah E-Prix.

Leading the way with Nissan e.dams’ Sebastian Buemi in second and Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler’s Lucas di Grassi in third, the British driver maintained his position up front while DS Techeetah’s Antonio Felix da Costa – who moved into fourth after Mahindra Racing’s Jerome d’Ambrosio retired from the race due to technical difficulties – was on the attack.

Making his way through the pack, da Costa was eager to make the podium, attacking Buemi and nudging the back of his car while sending him spinning into oncoming traffic. The Nissan driver rejoined the pack in 15th but came under investigation by the FIA.

With more than 30 minutes left on the clock, Bird was tapped by Panasonic Jaguar Racing’s Mitch Evans going through Turn 4, before being tapped again by Mahindra Racing’s Pascal Wehrlein going through Turn 5. The British driver – who clinched the win in the first race only a day before – met with the wall. With significant damage to his car, the Brit was out of the race.

After consideration by the FIA, Da Costa was handed a 10-second drive through penalty for causing the incident with Buemi, while the Nissan driver was also handed the same punishment for his re-entry into the race that was deemed unsafe.

While his teammate was already out of the race, fellow Envision driver Robin Frijns lost control of his Audi-powered car between Turn 5 and 6, hitting the wall sideways on Turn 7. Damaged and stranded in his car, the Yellow Flag was raised while his car was recovered.

With eight minutes left on the clock, Sims maintained his lead while , further down the pack, Jaguar’s Evans was handed a 10-second drive through penalty for the collision with Bird.

Taking his ATTACK MODE, di Grassi in third temporarily lost a position before blasting back past Mercedes-Benz EQ’s Stoffel Vandoorne with 35kW of extra power. Not taking the ATTACK MODE, Sims’ teammate Max Guenther slipped into second as the two BMW’s led the way with only minutes left on the clock.

Stretching the lead to over three seconds with five minutes left on the clock, Guenther defended hard against di Grassi, holding the ATTACK MODE-enabled Brazilian at bay. With the added power, the Audi driver set the fastest lap on the attack against the German.

With both BMWs crossing the line in tandem, the Sims clinched his first ever race win in the ABB FIA Formula E Championship with his teammate in second and Audi’s di Grassi in third.


Post race – Guenther dropped after penalty, Vandoorne inherits third place podium finish

Following a post-race penalty, BMW i Andretti Motorsport’s Max Guenther drops off the podium. Following this decision, Mercedes-Benz EQ’s Stoffel Vandoorne is promoted to third place to round off the season opener in Saudi.

Following a chaotic season opener in Saudi Arabia, BMW i Andretti Motorsport’s Max Guenther lost his podium finish after the FIA found him in breach of the regulations for overtaking Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler’s Lucas di Grassi while the BMW i Safety Car was out.

After a fraught race, which saw Guenther’s teammate Alex Sims dominate the race from Pole to finish, the German driver took second place in front of di Grassi – what would have been his maiden podium in Formula E.

Coming under investigation after the race, the 22 year-old driver was handed a 24 second time penalty, which relegated him down the order. Moving up to the podium was Mercedes’ Stoffel Vandoorne, who clinched his second podium of the race weekend, rounding off a sensational debut performance for new manufacturer works squad Mercedes-Benz EQ team.

Sims: Maiden win in Saudi was unexpected

During the opening two races of the 2019/20 ABB FIA Formula E Championship, BMW i Andretti Motorsport’s Alex Sims weekend went from ‘disaster’ to a sensational success after the Brit secured his maiden win in the series in Saudi Arabia. But the victory was far from expected, he claims.

“Today, we seemed to get every decision right,” said BMW i Andretti Motorsport’s Alex Sims, reflecting on his maiden win in the ABB FIA Formula E Championship.

“The pace was good, which was probably the fundamental thing that was really on my side – I felt like the car was really strong today…It felt like we made the right calls.”

After starting from Pole for the last two races (including the final race of the 2018/19 season in New York City), Sims failed on both occasions to convert it into a win. Despite landing his maiden Podium in the Big Apple, it wasn’t until the final race in Diriyah that he finally managed to clinch his first outright victory.

“I’ve worked through some pretty tough moments over the past year and the team stuck by me and gave me all the help I needed.”

When asked if the win surpassed his expectations ahead of the weekend, the Brit replied: “Absolutely, of course – I never would go into the weekend expecting to get Pole positions or race wins.”

“Obviously, I’ve worked hard to try and achieve that but it’s never the expectation from my side…you just hope for the best,” he added with a smile.

 

 

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28 minutes ago

MotoGP

The first win for Suzuki since Silverstone 2016! 👏

Álex Rins made the move to take himself to the top step of the podium for the first time in #MotoGP🏆

#AmericasGP 🇺🇸
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Duarte Ruivo

46

See you in April @ COTA

Yellow choke artist one trick pony.

2 hrs ago

MotoGP

A look back at all the funny moments of #missingtheapex from the #AmericasGP 🇺🇸

#MotoGP
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Love it! 😁❤️

this scene makes me happy🤣

I'm so happy watching marq marquez crash

Robin Berumen

Marquez 93 best rider👍💯% motogp champion🏆

👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻

Adegan utamanya keren😂😂😂😂

Aidil Uzair 😂

after watch this i learn lesson from marc. marc be like "you can make fun of me, but ill break the point record"

I'll forever LOVE this one. Because my Twitter post made it at the 1:51 minute mark lol🤓🤓🤓

Ud

Marc Marquez ❤️ 93 ✌🏻😍

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7 hrs ago

CircuitProDigital

Photograph: Foto Speedy
............................

HTP Mercedes takes 2019 Gulf 12 Hours pole position

The #48 HTP Motorsport Mercedes AMG GT3 took provisional pole position in an exciting end to the qualifying session for the 2019 Gulf 12 Hours at Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi.

With pole position secured by recording the average time of the three 15-minute qualifying sessions, Mercedes AMG factory driver Maximilian Götz climbed into the car for the third and final session, taking over from team-mates Dominik Baumann and Al Faisal Al Zubair. Sitting in third place overall, Götz was behind the Pro-Am #20 GPX Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R and #66 Attempto Racing Audi R8 GT3 Pro car.

With all 31 cars searching for a space on track in the final moments, many drivers were suffering with traffic, but with only five minutes remaining, the timesheets began to change and Götz managed to put the #48 Mercedes to the top of the average times.

The Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini Huracán GT3 Evo, which finished top of the previous day’s night testing, was now again in the hands of Patrick Kujala, and the Finland driver produced an outstanding lap of 2m08.450s, the quickest of the third session, to lift the car up to pole position.

His car’s average time was bettered, however, shortly after as Götz managed to find a clear lap through the traffic to regain top spot. Despite his best efforts, Kujala was unable to respond and had to settle for second place but on the front row of the grid ahead of the #66 Attempto Racing Audi R8 GT3 and #83 Iron Lynx Ferrari 488 GT3. It was an impressive recovery from the #48 HTP Mercedes after it suffered an oil pump failure in Wednesday’s test session which led to a new engine flown in overnight from Germany.

The #46 Pro-Am Ferrari 488 GT3 of Monster VR46 Kessel was in need of a helping hand after the second qualifying session, lying just inside the top ten. But with Valentino Rossi at the wheel, setting a personal best session time of 2m09.589s, it vaulted the car up to seventh place and the fourth row of the grid for Saturday’s race.

The #12 Art Line Team Georgia Lamborghini Super Trofeo took pole position in the GT Cup 1 class, in eighth place overall, two-tenths of a second ahead of the 10th place #88 Dragon Racing Lamborghini Super Trofeo.

The GT3 AM class will be headed by Mercedes machinery, as the #10 SPS Automotive Performance Mercedes AMG took pole on row six, two places ahead of the #84 AKKA ASP Mercedes AMG, with the #65 Kessel Racing Ferrari 488 in third.

The #2 United Autosports Ligier JSP3 won the pole battle in the Prototype class ahead of the #4 ARC Bratislava Ginetta P3.

The #14 MRS GT Racing Porsche Cup car secured pole position in the GT Cup 2 class ahead of the #87 GDL Racing Porsche.

The GT4 class was headed by the #90 SVC Sport Management Mercedes AMG, ahead of the British duo #22 Balfe Motorsport McLaren 570S, and David Appleby Engineering Aston Martin Vantage.

The 2019 Gulf 12 Hours will begin at 09:30 local time (GMT +4), and can be viewed on the Gulf 12 Hours YouTube channel, and Facebook page.



Maximilian Götz (#48 HTP Motorsport Mercedes AMG GT3):

“We possibly went out too late as I was stuck behind traffic on the out lap so I wasn’t able manage the tyres how I wanted. The first lap was okay, but it’s always the second and third laps that are the best. I had to drop back again so I just wasn’t finding the rhythm. But finally on the penultimate lap, I was able to find the best gap and I’m happy that it took us back to the top of the times. It’s a cool feeling. But there was definitely more in the car for us to be more ahead than we were.



“My team-mates did an amazing job. It’s special being on pole, but especially at a race and circuit like this.



“It’s my first time driving at Yas Marina Circuit. I went out and immediately felt at home. I’ve been doing thousands of laps on the computer at home and I really knew every turning-in point and gears.



“The balance of the car definitely changes throughout the race in the hotter and cooler temperatures in the second half of the race. So it’s all about the tyre pressures and being in the right window, as you don’t get chance to change anything else on the car. We did some testing of pressures in the night testing yesterday [Thursday], so we think we know where we should be.



“I think I’ll be starting the race, and keeping the lead will of course be important. But it’s a long-distance race, we shouldn’t touch in the first corners so we will try to keep ahead and to create a gap to hand over to Dominik.”



Patrick Kujala (#77 Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini Huracán GT3 Evo):

“The main thing was to get out in clear space because the track and air temperature went down, so the peak of the tyres will last longer, one or two laps. So we knew that track position was key. That played an important part and we were able to pull out a good lap. It was a decent lap.

“I will probably be starting the race. It isn’t a sprint race, so I won’t be doing anything stupid. But of course, if there’s a chance to take the lead, I’m going to go for it.”
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Photograph: Foto Speedy
............................

HTP Mercedes takes 2019 Gulf 12 Hours pole position

The #48 HTP Motorsport Mercedes AMG GT3 took provisional pole position in an exciting end to the qualifying session for the 2019 Gulf 12 Hours at Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi.

With pole position secured by recording the average time of the three 15-minute qualifying sessions, Mercedes AMG factory driver Maximilian Götz climbed into the car for the third and final session, taking over from team-mates Dominik Baumann and Al Faisal Al Zubair. Sitting in third place overall, Götz was behind the Pro-Am #20 GPX Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R and #66 Attempto Racing Audi R8 GT3 Pro car.

With all 31 cars searching for a space on track in the final moments, many drivers were suffering with traffic, but with only five minutes remaining, the timesheets began to change and Götz managed to put the #48 Mercedes to the top of the average times.

The Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini Huracán GT3 Evo, which finished top of the previous day’s night testing, was now again in the hands of Patrick Kujala, and the Finland driver produced an outstanding lap of 2m08.450s, the quickest of the third session, to lift the car up to pole position.

His car’s average time was bettered, however, shortly after as Götz managed to find a clear lap through the traffic to regain top spot. Despite his best efforts, Kujala was unable to respond and had to settle for second place but on the front row of the grid ahead of the #66 Attempto Racing Audi R8 GT3 and #83 Iron Lynx Ferrari 488 GT3. It was an impressive recovery from the #48 HTP Mercedes after it suffered an oil pump failure in Wednesday’s test session which led to a new engine flown in overnight from Germany.

The #46 Pro-Am Ferrari 488 GT3 of Monster VR46 Kessel was in need of a helping hand after the second qualifying session, lying just inside the top ten. But with Valentino Rossi at the wheel, setting a personal best session time of 2m09.589s, it vaulted the car up to seventh place and the fourth row of the grid for Saturday’s race.

The #12 Art Line Team Georgia Lamborghini Super Trofeo took pole position in the GT Cup 1 class, in eighth place overall, two-tenths of a second ahead of the 10th place #88 Dragon Racing Lamborghini Super Trofeo.

The GT3 AM class will be headed by Mercedes machinery, as the #10 SPS Automotive Performance Mercedes AMG took pole on row six, two places ahead of the #84 AKKA ASP Mercedes AMG, with the #65 Kessel Racing Ferrari 488 in third.

The #2 United Autosports Ligier JSP3 won the pole battle in the Prototype class ahead of the #4 ARC Bratislava Ginetta P3.

The #14 MRS GT Racing Porsche Cup car secured pole position in the GT Cup 2 class ahead of the #87 GDL Racing Porsche.

The GT4 class was headed by the #90 SVC Sport Management Mercedes AMG, ahead of the British duo #22 Balfe Motorsport McLaren 570S, and David Appleby Engineering Aston Martin Vantage.

The 2019 Gulf 12 Hours will begin at 09:30 local time (GMT +4), and can be viewed on the Gulf 12 Hours YouTube channel, and Facebook page.

 

Maximilian Götz (#48 HTP Motorsport Mercedes AMG GT3):

“We possibly went out too late as I was stuck behind traffic on the out lap so I wasn’t able manage the tyres how I wanted. The first lap was okay, but it’s always the second and third laps that are the best. I had to drop back again so I just wasn’t finding the rhythm. But finally on the penultimate lap, I was able to find the best gap and I’m happy that it took us back to the top of the times. It’s a cool feeling. But there was definitely more in the car for us to be more ahead than we were.

 

“My team-mates did an amazing job. It’s special being on pole, but especially at a race and circuit like this.

 

“It’s my first time driving at Yas Marina Circuit. I went out and immediately felt at home. I’ve been doing thousands of laps on the computer at home and I really knew every turning-in point and gears.

 

“The balance of the car definitely changes throughout the race in the hotter and cooler temperatures in the second half of the race. So it’s all about the tyre pressures and being in the right window, as you don’t get chance to change anything else on the car. We did some testing of pressures in the night testing yesterday [Thursday], so we think we know where we should be.

 

“I think I’ll be starting the race, and keeping the lead will of course be important. But it’s a long-distance race, we shouldn’t touch in the first corners so we will try to keep ahead and to create a gap to hand over to Dominik.”

 

Patrick Kujala (#77 Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini Huracán GT3 Evo):

“The main thing was to get out in clear space because the track and air temperature went down, so the peak of the tyres will last longer, one or two laps. So we knew that track position was key. That played an important part and we were able to pull out a good lap. It was a decent lap.

“I will probably be starting the race. It isn’t a sprint race, so I won’t be doing anything stupid. But of course, if there’s a chance to take the lead, I’m going to go for it.”

8 hrs ago

MotoGP

2019 Best clips 📽️

Still challenging with the best riders in the world! 🥈 Valentino Rossi VR46 Official's podium in Austin was nothing short of remarkable 👏

#AmericasGP 🇺🇸
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The best part of the race was cocky Marc with his special wanted helmet for the race was when he wrecked then they picked the bike up and it slowly fell back over on him LOL Im a Vale fan but that was a great showdown and seeing Alex cry for his first victory was great!

Hope Rossi can fight for wins next year. Its getting really boring without him up there.

The best marques

Come on marquez, another world title!!!

Nice one

marc is the best..💪

Where the hell is real champ MM93

Maybe a lot of changes next season...

Rossi!!!!!🔥🔥🔥🔥

He still first place for me😍

Go vale

Booooooooooooooooring 😴😴😴😴😴

Bravo Vale....👍👍👍👍

93nius rider

Legend....

Yeah ok

🔥

nice

Awesome

Salute The Doctor. Kiddos know nothing about The Lagend

👍👍👍

Marc Márquez

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19 hrs ago

F1

That Alex Albon is so cheeky 😂 ... See Less

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Omg! I love this duo so much! Never fail to make me laugh 😂

Actually I don't Like Alex' sense of humor :/ he is imo too arrogant

Why in the hell did Merc haven't done Grill the Grid?

If he think that one is bad i wonder what he think of the rookie of the year one ! 👀

Alex very honest! I like that

Congratulations

If he thought that trophy was crap, think how he must of felt about the rookie of the year trophy 😂

Is it just me or does anybody else wanna punch max in the fuckin face as hard as u could??

Congrats 😎

Did he say Sonny Moore at 0:28?

😂😂😂😂😂The speech

Lmao Hilarious

Sarah Jones

Celine Maddie

Nikko Par

Mary Valdez

Aalay Savla Mercedes DNS

Hgfgg

Ricardo Ruiz

While you patiently waiting for your monthly salary, others are busy earning nothing less than $500- $10000 every 48hours, Ask me how????

Alex Albon 💙

Rahul Kale Nuaman Wt

Max verstappen redbull

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