Formula E New York talking points: Big Apple hat-trick for Sam Bird, Maximilian Guenther gets first win of the season
Key talking points from another thrilling weekend of action at the FIA Formula E World Championship, with Sam Bird securing a hat-trick of wins in New York City and Maximilian Guenther picking up his first victory of the season. London is up next and the championship is wide open, with 13 point seperating the top six drivers.
The finish to New York City ePrix as Guenther takes Race 1 victory
The ABB FIA Formula E World Championship returned to the Brooklyn Street Circuit this weekend following a one-season hiatus for the 2021 ABB New York City E-Prix.
The first international sporting event to welcome spectators in the Big Apple since the pandemic, BMW i Andretti Motorsport’s Maximilian Guenther won on the Saturday before Jaguar Racing’s Sam Bird claimed victory in Sunday’s race to put him top of the Drivers’ World Championship.
Here are all your talking points from another thrilling weekend of electric racing:
Nick Cassidy of New Zealand and Envision Virgin Racing, 2nd position, Sam Bird of Great Britain and Jaguar Racing, 1st position, and Antonio Felix da Costa of Portugal and DS Techeetah, 3rd position, celebrate on the podium during the ABB FIA Formula E Ch
Image credit: Getty Images
Sam Bird made it a hat-trick of wins at the Brooklyn Street Circuit with a lights-to-flag victory at Round 11 on the Sunday to put the veteran top in the Drivers’ standings.
Bird started on pole position and produced a flawless race, securing an extra four points by virtue of also being quickest in Group Qualifying, with Jaguar teammate Mitch Evans starting second on the grid.
The Formula E veteran went into the weekend as the only previous double race winner in New York, having claimed victory in the first two races at the Brooklyn Street Circuit in 2017. In fact, Bird becomes the first driver in Formula E history to win three races at the same track.
Sunday’s victory was the perfect tonic for Bird following an accident in practice on Saturday which required a complete rebuild of his car. He was optimistic after recovering to points in Round 10, and the Round 11 win gives the 34-year-old driver the perfect springboard heading into his home race in London next time out.
Guenther brings it home for US-based Andretti team on Saturday
Sam Bird of Great Britain, Jaguar Racing, Jaguar I-TYPE 5, leads Tom Blomqvist of Great Britain, NIO 333, NIO 333 001 during the ABB FIA Formula E Championship - New York City E-Prix Round 10
That win kick-started what had been a slow season for the German, who profited from Jean-Eric Vergne’s overtake of polesitter Nick Cassidy to pass both drivers and then make full use of his extra energy to claim victory for the Andretti-run team on home soil.
DS TECHEETAH’s double champion Vergne finished second, while Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler's Lucas di Grassi rounded off the top three to claim another podium following victory in Mexico last time out.
Watched on by US motorsport royalty, team boss Michael Andretti, Gunether’s win marked a red-letter day for his team and potentially a turning point in his season, ahead of double header events in London and his home capital of Berlin.
Championship wide open, with London calling for Formula E
It is anyone’s title to win in Season 7 of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship with Guenther’s Round 10 victory making it nine different winners from ten races this season.
And after Round 11, just 13 points separate the top six in the Drivers’ standings. It’s a similar story in the Teams’ World Championship where five points split first-placed Envision Virgin Racing & third-placed Jaguar Racing.
The level of competition only adds to the excitement for the highly anticipated London races on July 24 & 25, the first time the all-electric series will visit the city since 2016.
Lindsey Vonn guest stars for Jaguar Racing
World Cup Alpine Ski racer, Lindsey Vonn, and former racing driver, Dario Franchitti, during the ABB FIA Formula E Championship
Image credit: Getty Images
World skiing champion Lindsey Vonn swapped the slopes for the streets when she linked up with the Jaguar Racing team ahead of the New York City event.
Vonn got behind the wheel of the Jaguar I-TYPE 5 racecar and enjoyed a thrilling lap of the Brooklyn circuit, driven by Formula E commentator and four-time IndyCar series champion Dario Franchitti.
“The acceleration and power in the Jaguar I-PACE is incredible and Formula E is doing a great job highlighting the importance of electric cars”, the 36-year-old said of the experience.
Three new race locations on exciting 2021/22 calendar
Ahead of the E-Prix, Formula E and the FIA published the provisional calendar for the 2021/2022 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship, featuring three new locations as part of a record 16-race season spanning 12 cities across four continents.
The first of the three new cities on the calendar is Cape Town, which will be the first international single-seater motorsport event in South Africa since the 1993 South African Grand Prix, while Vancouver is another welcome addition for the all-electric series.
The season climaxes with exciting double-header finale in Seoul, with a stunning street circuit in the capital of South Korea taking in the 1988 Olympic Stadium.
The series also returns to iconic street circuits at New York City, London and Berlin for Season 8, with a return to the legendary track at the Circuit de Monaco also on the cards for Formula E’s second season as an FIA-sanctioned World Championship.