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Vandoorne champion as Mortara wins in Seoul

Stoffel Vandoorne is the 2021-22 Formula E World Champion.

The Mercedes driver finished second in the final race of the season, clinching the title by more than 30 points.

Edoardo Mortara, who was knocked out of title contention in the first part of the Seoul E-Prix double header, took the race win.a

Vandoorne had had a quiet race on his way to the championship title. His only title rival Evans had a difficult qualifying session and would need to win the race to take the title.

Evans made good progress in the opening laps, but then became stuck behind Jean-Eric Vergne who was running P7. Evans was unable to find a way past the Techeetah driver. Though he was promoted a position to P6 after an incident ahead, it wouldn’t be enough to make a dent in Vandoorne’s point’s lead.

Vandoorne himself spent most of the race running fourth, behind Mortara, Jake Dennis and Antonio Felix Da Costa. There was little challenge from Robin Frijns behind.

The Mercedes driver made up a position after an incident between Dennis and Da Costa knocked Da Costa down the order. A penalty for Dennis then promoted Vandoorne to second.

He was a considerable distance away from race leader Mortara, but it made little difference to his championship challenge. Vandoorne took the chequered flag 3.756s behind Mortara and claimed his first Formula E World Championship.

Victory for Mortara wasn’t quite enough to take second in the championship standings.

Mortara had taken the lead of Formula E’s 100th race early on. Pole sitter Da Costa had held the lead off the line, but couldn’t stop a late lunge from the Venturi driver. Dennis followed Mortara through, knocking Da Costa down to third.

Mortara had little challenge at the front of the order and had extended a lead of more than three seconds over the battling Dennis and Da Costa when the safety car was brought out.

Maximilian Guenther had come to a stop on track shortly after the race’s half-way mark.

After a 10 minute safety car period, the race restart. Mortara immediately activated Attack mode for the second time and used the extra power to rebuild the gap.

He had a lead of almost three seconds over Dennis at one point, though the Andretti driver picked up the pace late on.

Dennis had been locked in a tight battle with Da Costa. Da Costa attempted a move around the outside of the Andretti car and was almost ahead when the two made contact. Da Costa was turned into the wall at low speed and was able to continue, but had plummeted down the order.

Dennis was deemed to be at fault for the incident and was handed a five second time penalty.

After the penalty announcement, Dennis picked up the pace and closed to within 1.7s of Da Costa, trying the minimise the number of positions lost.

At the chequered flag he dropped back to third, behind Vandoorne.

Da Costa spent the second half of the race in a battle with Lucas Di Grassi, who suffered a puncture early in the race. He managed to get ahead of the out-going Venturi driver and finished 10th after a penalty for Sergio Sette Camara for moving under braking.

Robin Frijns came home fourth, holding off Oliver Askew.

Vergne and Evans were nose to tail in sixth and seventh.

Nick Cassidy, Sebastien Buemi, and Da Costa completed the top 10.

Bethonie Waring

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