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Guenther scores second win of the season in action-filled Berlin race

Maximilian Guenther clinched victory in Berlin E-Prix’s third race, having had a strong performance and battle with poleman Jean-Eric Vergne. This is the German’s second triumph in the season. 

Ahead of the third race out of the six that form the special season finale in Berlin, Techeetah had scored another pole position, but this time it was reigning champion Vergne who would start the race from pole, as teammate and current championship leader da Costa would start from P8. 

The race started clean for the Frenchman, gaining advantage over the following positions. Guenther, who had qualified second, did not have the same luck, as Jerome d’Ambrosio instantly charged up for P2 as soon as red lights went out. The battle between these two was intense and non-stop during the first laps of the race. 

Just a couple of places behind, another fight was happening between Alex Lynn and Robi Frijns. However, the Brit struggles with his race pace shortly after, dropping a number of places in the standings. 

The first 10 minutes of the race did not have incidents, and had a strong dominance by Vergne. Teammate da Costa, who had a stellar performance in the first two races of the Berlin E-Prix, was still in P8 trying to pass Andre Lotterer who did not seem to give in. 

Mitch Evans, who had could not find a strong performance in the initial two rounds which cost him to drop significant championship points, was putting on a strong pace to gain places from the back of the grid charging up to the midfield. 

The first full course yellow took place after an incident between Neel Jani, Sergio Sette Camara, and James Calado, which led to the safety car being deployed as marshals removed the cars and debris from the track. The incident originated with the Brit’s car spinning, which led to Jani and Sette Camara’s cars being hit and ultimately crashing and stopping on track. 

As the race resumed, Guenther quickly went hunting for P1, closely chasing Vergne. The German BMW driver used attack mode to push for P1. 

Da Costa and Lynn had their own battle, with the Portuguese overtaking the Brit after some hard-fought scenes. The fight for sixth position caught all eyes, as Massa, Lotterer, and da Costa closely chased one another. The championship leader was able to pass Massa and was now one place away from entering the top five.

Vandoorne encountered bad luck, losing power and having to pit his car, ultimately retiring. 

Mitch Evans was able to enter the point-scoring positions. The Kiwi driver had climbed up from the bottom of the standings, making important overtakes to finally gain a spot in the Top 10. 

Up front, Guenther was still pushing to overtake race leader Vergne. The young German, who collected his first win in Santiago this season, was right in Vergne’s mirrors, following his every move looking for the slightest gap to make his final overtake to take the lead. 

The BMW driver finally passed the Seasons 4 and 5 champion, with less just three minutes until the end of the race, taking the lead of the race in the last couple of laps. Vergne, who had been relegated to P2, was quickly overtaken by Frijns and dropped to third place.  

Frijns quickly went on to battle for the P1 spot, and typical nail-bitting Formula E action took place until the chequered flag was waved and Guenther crossed the line in first place with a slight gap of 0.128 seconds to Frijns. The German scored his second win of the season. Vergne, today’s poleman, came third, followed by teammate da Costa. Lotterer completed the Top 5. 

Oliver Rowland and d’Ambrosio came sixth and seventh, respectively, with di Grassi following next. Evans, who had started the race quite behind in the grid, was able to drive his way up to the point-scoring positions, finishing ninth, while Alexander Sims ended in P10. 

Andrea Perilli

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