Di Grassi triumphs in Paris ePrix

Lucas Di Grassi crossed the line in first place after a late crash by rookie Ma Qing Ha saw the inaugural Paris ePrix finish behind the safety car.

Driving for Team ABT, Di Grassi finished ahead of Virgin Racing’s Jean-Eric Vergne to make it back-to-back victories and extend his Formula E championship lead to 11 points.

Renault e.dams duo Sebastien Buemi and Nicolas Prost finished third and fourth respectively, followed by Venturi’s Stephane Sarrazin in fifth.

Vergne’s Virgin team-mate Sam Bird started from pole position and looked set for a podium finish until a late error dropped him down to sixth.

Di Grassi produced a dominant performance from start to finish, beating pole sitter Bird into Turn 1 to grab a lead he would not relinquish for the remainder of the race.

Chinese newcomer Ma’s crash five laps from the end threatened a close fight to the finish, but the recovery of Ma’s Team Aguri car took too long, allowing the leader to coast home in first place behind the safety vehicle.

Vergne secured second place after passing his team-mate Bird at the start. The duo touched wheels later in the race, but Vergne was able to hold on to his position.

Bird’s late error, meanwhile, opened the door for Buemi to grab the final podium spot.

The Frenchman lagged behind Vergne and Bird as he struggled to get his tyres up to temperature, but he did eventually get the required heat in the rubber and caught up.

Still using season one machinery, Robin Frijns and Antonio Felix da Costa finished in the points as they crossed in seventh and eighth for Andretti Autosport and Team Aguri.

“I think it was the most perfect start we had so far,” said winner Di Grassi after the race.

“Sam had a lot of wheelspin and I just managed to avoid getting any. Jean-Eric also had a very good start and I was looking in my mirrors to make sure that he didn’t get room on the inside.
“From then onwards I was pushing really hard, even after the Full Course Yellow.

“After the pitstop, on the cold tyres the car was just sliding for two laps as I tried to build up the temperatures and he caught up a bit.

“To see people all around the track cheering, on the inside of the track and the outside… it’s just amazing what was done here today and I hope we race here many more times and in more cities like Paris. This is what Formula E is about.”

Results

1 Lucas di Grassi Team Abt 52:40.324
2 Jean-Eric Vergne Virgin Racing +0.853
3 Sebastien Buemi DAMS +1.616
4 Nicolas Prost DAMS +2.142
5 Stephane Sarrazin Venturi +3.044
6 Sam Bird Virgin Racing +3.856
7 Robin Frijns Andretti Autosport +5.141
8 Antonio Felix da Costa Team Aguri +7.000
9 Bruno Senna Mahindra Racing +8.433
10 Daniel Abt Team Abt +9.479
11 Jerome d’Ambrosio Dragon Racing +10.738
12 Nick Heidfeld Mahindra Racing +12.453
13 Oliver Turvey China Racing +13.721
14 Mike Conway Venturi +14.833
15 Simona de Silvestro Andretti Autosport +16.049
R Nelson Piquet Jr. China Racing
R Ma Qing Hua Team Aguri
R Loic Duval Dragon Racing

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