Sebastian Buemi became the first driver to convert pole position into a race win as he took a comfortable win at the first ever Monaco ePrix. His win catapults him back into the championship fight with just four rounds left. Championship leaders Lucas di Grassi and Nelson Piquet Jr took the other podium positions and there was certainly no love lost between the two of them as the battle for the WDC heats up.
The tight circuit configuration led to a huge accident on the run down to the turn 2 hairpin, which forced several drivers into retirement and caused the afternoon’s only safety car. The incident began when Daniel Abt was forced wide into the barrier, causing Senna to go airborne over him. Several drivers were able to get their cars going after the incident but for Senna, the race was over.
There was huge drama on lap 1, which resulted in a safety car.
Piquet Jr made his way up to 3rd on lap 6; his use of fanboost let him get alongside Jerome D’Ambrosio into turn 1 and whilst he wasn’t able get by, it allowed him to get a better exit and pass into the hairpin. Sam Bird also provided some excitement, making his way to 4th after some sublime racing and a great strategy.
The latter half of the race was characterised by a great scrap between Piquet and Lucas di Grassi. The championship leaders, who fell out during the morning session, almost collided as they went into the hairpin on lap 42, but the tight corners of Monaco made it difficult for Piquet Jr to force a pass.
‘It was a good race’ said di Grassi after the race. ‘I did a different strategy from Buemi at the pit stop but it meant I had to defend from Nelson Piquet at the end’. He extends his championship lead to 4 points over second placed Nelson Piquet Jr.
Whereas previous Formula E races have been full of overtaking and drama, the Monaco ePrix proved to be a relatively low key affair, as expected from the tight track layout. Thankfully, the final result keeps the championship fight as tight as ever, with Sebastian Buemi now back in the hunt – He is now just 10 points behind Di Grassi.