Lucas di Grassi has been crowned as the new FIA Formula E champion after he finished seventh in the season finale in Montreal. It was enough to beat title contender Sébastien Buemi.
After disaster struck on Saturday, when he crashed in practiced, received a ten-place grid penalty and ultimately was excluded from the race result due to an underweight car, Buemi didn’t have any luck on Sunday too. The title race was over when he was hit in the first lap and had to visit the team in the pit lane. The Swiss Renault e.dams driver managed to take 11th.
Di Grassi however kept out of trouble and added six more points to his total. “This journey started three years ago, when we started season one,” he said. “We got a lot of good results – arrived in London fighting for the championship – even though I was disqualified from winning a race. Season two, it was the same situation – again I got disqualified from winning a race and now, finally, I came here as an underdog, 10 points behind and I had the nerves to keep it calm and did the job Saturday.
“Now, I managed to bring it home, I’m so happy for the team, so happy for the ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport guys – they really deserve it. This season was our toughest I would say. I had to do one race with a broken fibula, I really had luck on my side in some races, Hong Kong and Mexico for example. So, I guess this was our year and it’s extremely satisfying.”
Buemi, together with Nico Prost and Pierre Gasly’s contribution in New York, won the teams’ title. “I’m a bit disappointed, honestly,” he said. “When you see the speed we had this year, to not win the [drivers’] championship is a bit hard to accept. But I’d like to congratulate Lucas for the job he’s done. I think he’s done a great job this year. They’ve done a better job than us, we got disqualified twice and we missed two races, so it’s difficult to fight like that.”
Jean-Eric Vergne meanwhile had battled for position in front and this time he finally managed to take the top spot of the podium, beating Mahindra’s Felix Rosenqvist and DS Virgin drivers José María López and Sam Bird.
“It’s an amazing result for the team in our first year,” Vergne said. “We’ve had a few ups and downs. Obviously, a win was in reach many times this season – but for some reason we couldn’t quite get it. I think this weekend everything went quite smoothly, everything was perfect.
“To get this first win for the team, for myself, right at the end of the season before the summer break is something amazing. All the people who’ve worked so hard, it was nice to reward them with something like this. As for myself, to score my maiden win, as well as the first win of the team is only going to make my relationship with the team even stronger. Hopefully it’s the first of many and I think it puts us in a completely different position for next year.”