Mortara outfoxes Vergne to win Berlin Formula E Race 1

Edoardo Mortara

Edoardo Mortara has won the opening race of Formula E’s Berlin double-header thanks to a combination of pace and smarts.

The Venturi driver qualified on pole at the Berlin Tempelhof Airport and led for vast majority of the 40 laps, even if he did fall as far back as third.

Having saved up his Attack Mode until late in the piece, Mortara made light work of Porsche’s Andre Lotterer and Mercedes’ Stoffel Vandoorne to reclaim first position on Lap 33.

However, Jean-Eric Vergne climbed to second position on Lap 35 thanks to his Fanboost, and had energy in hand relative to Car #48 ahead of him.

The DS Techeetah driver put Mortara under pressure but, on Lap 37, was enticed by the race leader into a dive at Turn 6 which cost him momentum.

Mortara skipped away and ultimately took victory by 1.782s over Vergne, whose attention shifted rearwards in the laps which followed in order to hold off Vandoorne and Lotterer.

“”You have to ask [Vergne] about what happened at the end,” said the victorious Swiss pilot after what was Race 7 of the season.

“He tried to overtake me but I was kind of anticipating it, but luckily for me he couldn’t really stop at the apex of the corner, and I couldn’t pass him straight away, and I knew that he had spent a lot of energy so it would be difficult for him to pass me again.”

Vandoorne had to settle for third, but that was still a solid result considering he had dropped to 12th on Lap 1, and the Belgian continues to lead the drivers’ championship, by a three-point margin over Vergne.

Lotterer greeted the chequered flag in fourth and Jaguar’s Mitch Evans rose to fifth from ninth on the grid, meaning he retains third in the drivers’ standings.

Mercedes holds sway in the teams’ championship, with a nine-point gap over DS Techeetah ahead of the second race of the Berlin E-Prix weekend.

That encounter, which will see drivers run in reverse circuit direction, gets underway tonight.

Stan Sport’s live and ad-free coverage of the race kicks off at 22:30 AEST, after live practice and qualifying also.

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