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Formula E London ePrix I

DS Penske holds its own in the standings

The penultimate race of the Formula E season was chaotic but ended with Jake Dennis claiming his first world title as DS Penske and Jean-Éric Vergne remained fifth in the respective standings.

Stoffel Vandoorne, DS Penske

On Saturday afternoon in London, the stakes were very different for each team.

On home turf and in front of their home fans, title-contending Jaguar and Envision Racing had very high expectations. For Porsche, a perfect display was required to remain in contention for the constructors’ championship, while Andretti, the German manufacturer's customer team, had Dennis battling to claim the drivers’ crown.

DS Automobiles and its partner Penske Autosport were aiming to maintain their positions. After an observation round in free practice on Friday afternoon, as usual, to limit the risks associated with the fact that the track used is not a permanent circuit, the two DS E-TENSE FE23s of Vergne and Stoffel Vandoorne then began to set better times.

In the qualifying groups, JEV missed out on the quarter-finals by just two-tenths of a second. Stoffel Vandoorne also missed out on a place in the final stages of qualifying but had to contend with the Jaguar of Mitch Evans in the semi-finals. In fact, it was the New Zealander who won qualifying, before dropping back to 6th position as he served a grid penalty that he had been handed in Rome.

A highly tactical and chaotic race

Starting 7th and 13th on the grid, Vandoorne and Vergne were initially caught up in traffic. At the front, Envision Racing was able to rely on Sébastien Buemi's studied slowness to allow Nick Cassidy to comfortably activate his attack mode and try to extend his lead over the pack without consuming too much energy.

Evans was very aggressive and knew he was playing for big points.

In the opening laps, Vandoorne hit a Maserati which closed the door on him as he tried to overtake.

Stoffel Vandoorne, DS Penske

Stoffel Vandoorne, DS Penske

Photo by: Joao Filipe / DPPI

Some drivers then experienced problems activating their attack mode, while championship leader Jake Dennis remained in a tense battle.

In the DS Penske team, Vandoorne remained in the top 10, but Vergne was forced to retire due to a technical problem.

At the front, Evans drove a strong race, but Cassidy was forced to pit after colliding with team-mate Buemi…a tough blow for Envision Racing.

The rest of the race was complicated to follow, due to a number of "borderline" behaviours in a tight environment. After two red flags, Evans won the first race of the weekend ahead of Dennis, who thus secured his first world championship crown in an electric single-seater. Buemi was third.

Sunday’s race will decide the constructors’ champion with points still up for grabs for the honour and history amongst the Formula E brands. The Franco-American DS Penske team will be there to consolidate its position once again and finish the season on a high.

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