The TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team has claimed more valuable points at the third part of the grand season finale in the ABB FIA Formula E Championship in Berlin (DE). André Lotterer (DE) crossed the finish line in fifth place in the #36 Porsche 99X Electric. Having started from seventh position, the German driver scored another ten points thanks to a strong final phase and some good energy management. Neel Jani (CH) retired from the eighth race of the season after a not-at-fault collision in the second Porsche 99X Electric.
Finishing in the top-ten again saw Lotterer increase his points tally in the drivers’ championship to 55 and he is now in sixth place. He has scored at least one point in six of the eight races of the season thus far. The TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team is eighth in the team standings, with the same number of points.
This time around, the Formula E teams were driving on the traditional Formula E circuit at Berlin-Tempelhof. Lotterer and Jani hit the track in start groups two and four respectively. Lotterer recorded a time of 1:06.867 minutes, missing out on Super Pole by just 21 thousandths of a second, and finished seventh to secure a spot on the fourth row of the grid. Jani posted a time of 1:07.193 minutes to claim 18th place.
The two Porsche drivers began the race in sweltering conditions as temperatures topped 30 degrees Celsius. Lotterer was able to defend his seventh place at the start, while Jani emerged from some battles in an intensive early phase in 17th position. The Swiss driver’s participation in the Berlin E-Prix came to an early end after around 15 minutes, however, when he was involved in an accident through no fault of his own. Jani’s Porsche 99X Electric was too badly damaged for him to continue and a safety car period then ensued. After the restart, the ‘Attack Modes’ employed by the drivers provided plenty of action throughout the field, though Lotterer remained calm and maintained his position in the top ten. For the fourth time this season, he was one of the five drivers rewarded with Fanboost after online voting by the fans. In the closing minutes of the race, Lotterer made another two thrilling overtaking manoeuvres to ensure that he would finish fifth and collect more points.
Reactions to the Berlin E-Prix
Amiel Lindesay (Head of Operations Formula E): “Qualifying was not ideal and we lost a bit of time. However, we knew that we would have a good car in the race. André really battled hard and gave a great performance. We have scored some important championship points and we are pleased with the result. Now we are looking forward to tomorrow. If we can finish two or three places higher in qualifying, we have a good chance of a podium finish.”
Neel Jani (Porsche 99X Electric, #18): “The car felt good today so it is even more of a shame that we had to retire. I was able to apply pressure on the competitors in front of me and improve from the start but then there was a pile-up in front of me with cars spinning left and right. Unfortunately, one of them came to a standstill right in front of me and I caught it. It was a racing accident. That just happens sometimes. Now we have to make sure that we get to the front tomorrow, as that will hopefully help me to avoid anything like that.”
André Lotterer (Porsche 99X Electric, #36): “Starting from seventh, I found my rhythm pretty fast. It took a bit of time to pass some cars in front of me. The closing stage of the race was really strong. I didn’t quite manage to reach the podium but fifth place scores us some more points. Qualifying was very promising. Sector one and sector two were really good and I had a slide in sector three, which cost me a few tenths of a second. That threw me out of Super Pole, although I could easily have been in it. We will try and do even better tomorrow.”
The action continues on Sunday with the ninth round of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship 2019/2020. The drivers and teams will once again be competing on the traditional Formula E circuit in Berlin-Tempelhof. After that race, the track layout will be adjusted on Monday and Tuesday to host the final two races of the season on 12th and 13th August.