Guenther wins late thriller as Da Costa closes on maiden FE title

Maximilian Guenther overtook both Jean-Eric Vergne and Robin Frijns on a dramatic final lap at the third Formula E race in Berlin as fourth place for Antonio Felix da Costa extended his championship lead.

Vergne, who has endured a testing season in comparison to his new DS TECHEETAH teammate, looked set for victory having led from pole position. But with energy dwindling, Vergne had to cede position to both Frijns and Guenther, as the German swept into the lead to take victory as the Tempelhof circuit reverted to it’s traditional layout.

It meant that Vergne was still left celebrating his first podium since Marrakesh, but that his chances of making it three Formula E titles on the bounce is all but over. For Da Costa, however, it would now take a monumental slip-up not to win his first, as the Portuguese now leads the standings by 68 points from Guenther with Audi’s Lucas di Grassi third, a further eight points adrift.

“It was important to qualify on the front row near the top guys,” said Guenther. “It was a tough race and we managed it well and kept cool – taking the Attack Mode early on both occasions.

“We made the move on JEV and Robin (Frijns) was able to get a bit of a run on us but we held on. I knew the guys behind had slightly more energy than us, so I had to make the pass on Vergne as early as I could. I was never going to give the win up on the last lap!”

Former DS TECHEETAH driver and now Porsche man Andre Lotterer held onto fifth from the consistent Oliver Rowland, Jerome D’Ambrosio and Di Grassi as Mitch Evans and Alexander Sims rounded off the points scoring finishers.

“What makes Formula E so exciting is the super small margins that you have to gain to start at the front,” said championship leader Da Costa. “Unfortunately, they were not on my side today, but I managed to climb up the pack throughout the race and end fourth which I’m super happy about. It’s all about scoring the points, that was the goal for today and we secured it. The plan for tomorrow is a clean race, that’s all I’m going to focus on.”

Motorsport Technology