Condensed season

Lucas di Grassi in the thick of it as Formula E returns to the track.

With a format not before seen in international motorsport, the Formula E teams are fighting out the remainder of the 2019/20 season condensed into an intensive week.

11 August, 2020

No international motorsport event has been held in similar conditions – certainly one for the ages

It’s a totally new approach to international motorsport, designed specifically to meet the demands placed on the sport by the COVID pandemic. After five months of no track activity, the FIA Formula E Championship got back underway this week to decide the 2019/20 series with an intensive six races in nine days, all at the same venue and without crowds allowed.

Held in Berlin at the former Tempelhof Airport, we are currently four races into the six race finale at what is a familiar venue for the sport, but in very different circumstances.

Adjusting to the circumstances, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler scored points straight out of the blocks with both cars and their drivers performing well. Lucas di Grassi showed one of his typical comeback drives after a difficult qualifying session in the first race while his new teammate, DTM champion René Rast scoring a point straight away in his first race for Audi in the electric racing series.

Rast started from 13th on the grid in his first ever Formula E race and fought his way into the top 10, even dropping back to 17th at one stage but never giving up. 

“As expected, my first race for Audi in Formula E was pretty chaotic,” said Rast. “Safety cars, full course yellows, accidents in front of and beside me. I learned a lot today, gained experience and scored a point straight away.”

The second race of Formula E in Berlin saw the first podium for Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler. From sixth on the grid, former world champion, Lucas di Grassi moved up to third place with René Rast only narrowly missing out on points despite numerous setbacks.

“When you’re on the podium in Formula E, it was a good day,” said di Grassi. “We worked hard and improved the car a lot compared to yesterday.”

Reaching the halfway mark in the condensed series, Lucas di Grassi with 61 points in the drivers’ championship was sitting in third position outright. But after scoring more points in the fourth race of the season, his hopes at time of writing were very much alive to finish the season as runner-up.

Tied on points with Max Guenther (BMW) in third place, the last two races of the season this week will be crucial in deciding the second championship position.

With two races remaining, Lucas di Grassi is in the running to take second place in the championship