|2017 Montreal ePrix II|
The debuting Montreal ePrix circuit.
|Date||30th July 2017|
|Official Name||2017 Hydro-Québec Montréal ePrix|
|Location||Montréal, Québec, Canada|
|Lap length||2.750km (1.709mi)|
|Distance||37 laps / 101.750km (63.225mi)|
|Pole Sitter||Felix Rosenqvist|
|Fastest Lap||1:23.444 on lap 28|
|Jean-Éric Vergne||Felix Rosenqvist||José María López|
|Montreal I||Hong Kong I|
Qualifying resulted in Felix Rosenqvist taking pole, while Championship leader di Grassi got into the Super Pole shootout. Title rival Buemi would start down in fourteenth after a poor run, while his teammate Nicolas Prost started from the back of the field, as Renault e.Dams fought for the Teams' Championship.
It was a chaotic start to the race for Buemi, whom was tagged by António Félix da Costa as the pair attempted to avoid a spinning Stéphane Sarrazin. Out front, meanwhile, Rosenqvist had shot into the lead from pole, while Jean-Éric Vergne had dived past Sam Bird to claim second.
The order soon shook itself out over the opening laps, although the title fight was soon to be called to an effective end. The reason for this was because Buemi was carrying damage from his first corner contact, a piece of the rear-bodywork flapping around. The defending Champion was duly shown a black-and-orange mechanical flag for the flailing pod, only to have the pod fly off just a few moments later.
Renault e.Dams tried their best to get Buemi's compulsory visit to the pits removed, but the Swiss racer would ultimately have to serve a drive-through penalty as a result. That left him at the back of the field, and needing a safety car to have any hope of taking the crown.
As the stops loomed, Rosenqvist found himself using more energy than his rivals, and so was forced to stop a lap earlier than the rest of the pack, although the Swede had built a six second advantage by that stage. Vergne, however, was in the mood for fighting, and knowing that the Swede would have to save more energy, began to chip away at Rosenqvist's lead.
Bird, meanwhile, would tap the wall after the stop, damaging his steering and leaving him in a fight with Nick Heidfeld and teammate José María López for the final podium spot. Behind them, di Grassi, safe in the knowledge that Buemi was behind and outside of the points, allowed teammate Daniel Abt to retake sixth, although the German failed to make further ground.
Back with the leaders, and Rosenqvist was caught sleeping by Vernge, who dived past the Swede to take the lead in the closing stages to ultimately claim the win. Lopez claimed the final podium spot after dancing past Bird, whom was able to fend off Heidfeld as the trio crossed the line.
Abt claimed sixth while di Grassi took the title in seventh, while Sarrazin mounted an excellent comeback drive for eighth. Buemi was another to make a valiant comeback, just falling shy of the points, although fastest lap for teammate Prost ensured that Renault e.Dams won the teams' Championship.
There was a new Championship leader heading into the final round of the season, with Lucas di Grassi taking an eighteen point advantage over Sébastien Buemi into the finale. The latter's late disqualification meant it was the former who entered the final race as favourite, with di Grassi needing to finish fourth or higher to make it impossible for Buemi to overhaul him. For Buemi a second title would require him to finish on the podium with pole position at the minimum to retake his Championship lead, although he would most likely need to see di Grassi retire if he was to hold any hopes of retaining his crown.
Elsewhere, the fight for third was hotting up, with Sam Bird taking the position away from Felix Rosenqvist heading into the final day. Jean-Éric Vergne and Nicolas Prost had also dragged themselves into the fight, albeit some eighteen points behind Bird, although after the chaos of the first Montreal ePrix anything seemed possible. Other tight fights on the final day included a six driver scrap to get into the top ten, as poor form for season one Champion Nelson Piquet Jr. dragged him back towards the lower orders.
Renault e.Dams had all but secured their third title in a row in the Teams Championship after having their advantage cut to 33 points, although ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport were still in mathematical contention. Buemi's disqualification had made it slightly closer between the two efforts, although the latter would still need to claim a maximum score alongside an seventh place finish at a minimum. That would only work if the French squad did something they had never done: a complete failure to score.
As for the rest of the Teams' Championship, Mahindra Racing and DS Virgin Racing were engaged in a private fight for third, heading into the finale separated by 21 points. Techeetah were confirmed in fifth place overall, realistically unable to catch the fourth placed team while also being out of reach from compatriots NextEV NIO. The fight to avoid the wooden spoon was also a tight one on the final day, with just seven points separating Andretti in seventh from Jaguar Racing in tenth.
The full entry list for the 2017 Montreal ePrix II is displayed below:
There would be no changes to the qualifying format for the final race of the 2016/17 season, with the field split into four groups of five drivers to begin qualifying. Each group would have six minutes to set a single full power lap, with the overall order made up from each driver's best effort. The top five overall would then proceed to Super Pole, where they would have one shot at a full power lap on an empty circuit to try and claim pole position.
Throughout season three the first group had been the worst group to qualify in, so when Sébastien Buemi was drawn in the first quintet of the afternoon it seemed as if the title fight had swung massively in his rival's favour. The Swiss racer would be, regardless, be favourite from the quintet to get to Super Pole, although José María López had looked strong all weekend. Loïc Duval would hope that fastest lap on Saturday could inspire him to a better result, while Maro Engel and Adam Carroll aspired to top ten slots at best.
A general lack of grip for the first group of the day proved decisive for title pretending Buemi, as the Swiss racer produced a dismal effort after locking up badly at turn one. Even worse for the Swiss racer was the fact that he was only third fastest of the group, with Lopez and Duval both sneaking ahead of him in spite of mutual moments into turn one. Engel was half a second off having set his time first, while Carroll was largely out of control on his lap to record the slowest time overall.
Practice pace setter Felix Rosenqvist headlined group two for Mahindra Racing, having set a new circuit record earlier in the day. He would be up against another single lap star in the form of Jean-Éric Vergne, who was heading into the final round of the season desperate to take victory at last. Elsewhere, Jérôme d'Ambrosio would hope to at least get a competitive time in at all having failed to do so on Saturday, while Tom Dillmann and Mitch Evans were looking to defeat their teammates one last time.
Track evolution was expected to play a part in qualifying on Sunday, but that could not explain the huge jump in times for the second group, as Rosenqvist and Vergne took a second out of the earlier groups' efforts. Of the pair, Rosenqvist was faster with a 1:22.051, while Vergne was three tenths off with a 1:22.378. Dillmann's effort then made it impossible for Buemi to claim a Super Pole slot moments later, while d'Ambrosio just fell shy of the 1:22.000s to nudge the Swiss race further down the order. A huge turn one lock up for Evans all but ended his effort at the first hurdle, leaving him just ahead of teammate Carroll.
The third quintet of the afternoon served as the calm before the storm, consisting as it did of five drivers only really capable of getting into the top ten at best. Of those, Stéphane Sarrazin seemed the most likely, if he could get a clean lap in in the Techeetah, while the NextEV NIOs of Oliver Turvey and Nelson Piquet Jr. were strong over one lap. They would also be joined on circuit by the Andretti duo of Robin Frijns and António Félix da Costa.
Star of the third session would be Piquet Jr., although his effort of 1:22.972 left him out of the Super Pole hunt having locked up the rear wheels at turn ten. The rest of the runners were in the 1:23.000s, Sarrazin slotting in just a thousandth ahead of d'Ambrosio, while da Costa, Frijns and Turvey were a tenth apart behind the best of the group one runners.
The final five to hit the circuit in Montreal were all contenders for Super Pole, headlined as they were by Championship leader Lucas di Grassi, who could make it nigh-impossible for Buemi to win the Championship if he claimed pole. Also in action would be his teammate Daniel Abt, although Renault e.Dams could try some dirty tricks on the ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport effort as Nicolas Prost was also in action. Nick Heidfeld and Sam Bird, meanwhile, would be looking to get into Super Pole to end the season on a high, their teams still fighting for third in the Championship.
The action was instant for the final group session of the season, as Prost, di Grassi and Abt all left as one to set their efforts, leaving Bird and Heidfeld in the pits. Of the early trio it was Prost who led the charge, although his effort of 1:22.721 left him shy of Super Pole when Abt charged past to claim a 1:22.694. Next came di Grassi with a 1:22.459 to go third fastest overall, only for first Heidfeld and then Bird to charge across the line, the latter going fastest overall with a 1:22.012.
Having just run in the final group it was di Grassi who got things underway in Super Pole, although that recent run did little to improve his performance. Indeed, an oh-so familiar lock up into turn one ended his run early on, the Brazilian ultimately recording a 1:23.557 after battling around the rest of the circuit. Heidfeld compounded his poor effort by simply driving a precise, if risk free, lap to record a 1:23.041, meaning di Grassi headed into the finale with an eighteen point advantage over Buemi.
With Hiedfeld out of the way it was Vergne's turn to hit the circuit, and a perfect opening to his lap saw him claim a 1::22.769, faster than the pole time from Saturday. Rosenqvist went next and was nothing short of stunning, a small mistake into turn five more than made up for with a perfect run through the final sector, leaving the Swede with a 1:22.344.
Finally it was Bird's turn, and a perfect first sector for the Brit saw him open his lap a quarter of a second up on Rosenqvist's time. He was clearly throwing everything at his effort, a fact proved when the rear of the Virgin got away from Bird at turn seven, ending his hopes of pole. Half a lap later and Bird was across the line with a 1:22.559 knowing that mistake had cost him pole, and left him just a point clear of pole sitter Rosenqvist in their fight for third.
The final qualifying result for the 2017 Montreal ePrix II are outlined below:
|2017 Montreal ePrix II Qualifying Result|
|1st||19||Felix Rosenqvist||Mahindra Racing||1:22.344||—||1|
|2nd||2||Sam Bird||DS Virgin Racing||1:22.559||+0.215s||2|
|4th||23||Nick Heidfeld||Mahindra Racing||1:23.041||+0.697s||4|
|5th||11||Lucas di Grassi||ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport||1:23.557||+1.213s||5|
|1st||2||Sam Bird||DS Virgin Racing||1:22.012||—||SP|
|2nd||19||Felix Rosenqvist||Mahindra Racing||1:22.051||+0.039s||SP|
|4th||23||Nick Heidfeld||Mahindra Racing||1:22.423||+0.411s||SP|
|5th||11||Lucas di Grassi||ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport||1:22.459||+0.447s||SP|
|6th||66||Daniel Abt||ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport||1:22.694||+0.682s||6|
|7th*||8||Nicolas Prost||Renault e.Dams||1:22.721||+0.509s||20|
|9th||3||Nelson Piquet Jr.||NextEV NIO||1:22.972||+0.960s||8|
|11th||7||Jérôme d'Ambrosio||Dragon Racing||1:23.058||+1.046s||10|
|12th||37||José María López||DS Virgin Racing||1:23.313||+1.301s||11|
|13th||6||Loïc Duval||Dragon Racing||1:23.337||+1.325s||12|
|14th||9||Sébastien Buemi||Renault e.Dams||1:23.372||+1.360s||13|
|15th||28||António Félix da Costa||Andretti||1:23.635||+1.623s||14|
|17th||88||Oliver Turvey||NextEV NIO||1:23.709||+1.697s||16|
|18th||20||Mitch Evans||Jaguar Racing||1:23.755||+1.743s||17|
|20th||47||Adam Carroll||Jaguar Racing||1:24.024||+2.012s||19|
- * Prost received a 20 place grid penalty after work was carried out in parc fermé.
The final classification of the 2017 Montreal ePrix II is displayed below, with the fastest lap setter indicated in italics, and the pole sitter shown in bold.
|2017 Montreal ePrix II Race Result|
|Pos.||No.||Name||Team||Laps||Race Time||Fastest lap||Pts.|
|2nd||19||Felix Rosenqvist||Mahindra Racing||37||+0.896s||1:25.396||21|
|3rd||37||José María López||DS Virgin Racing||37||+4.468s||1:24.839||15|
|4th||2||Sam Bird||DS Virgin Racing||37||+7.114s||1:25.387||12|
|5th||23||Nick Heidfeld||Mahindra Racing||37||+21.933s||1:26.028||10|
|6th||66||Daniel Abt||ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport||37||+24.444s||1:25.247||8|
|7th||11||Lucas di Grassi||ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport||37||+24.855s||1:25.451||6|
|9th||7||Jérôme d'Ambrosio||Dragon Racing||37||+28.282s||1:25.927||2|
|11th||9||Sébastien Buemi||Renault e.Dams||37||+35.170s||1:24.916|
|12th||20||Mitch Evans||Jaguar Racing||37||+36.548s||1:25.137|
|14th||47||Adam Carroll||Jaguar Racing||37||+36.972s||1:25.785|
|15th||28||António Félix da Costa||Andretti||37||+39.720s||1:25.862|
|16th||3||Nelson Piquet Jr.||NextEV NIO||37||+46.751s||1:25.043|
|17th||88||Oliver Turvey||NextEV NIO||37||+49.116s||1:25.937|
|19th||6||Loïc Duval||Dragon Racing||34||+3 Laps||1:25.883|
|Ret||8||Nicolas Prost||Renault e.Dams||32||Retired||1:23.444||1|
- Second Montreal ePrix.
Having only led the Championship for two days across the 2016/17 season, it would be Lucas di Grassi who claimed the title, his final tally of 181 a record for the series. His margin over Sébastien Buemi, standing at 24 points, was also the largest FE had seen, although in truth the Swiss racer had thrown his second title away after a miserable Montreal weekend. Third place went to Felix Rosenqvist on the final day, overhauling Sam Bird by finishing on the podium.
Despite only claiming a single point in the season finale, Renault e.Dams secured their third straight Teams' Championship title, which had been their priority after Buemi's dismal Saturday. ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport ended the season as close as they had been all season, twenty points back, while Mahindra Racing secured third place after a strong season. DS Virgin Racing were 25 points behind come season end, while Techeetah had secured fifth on Saturday. Jaguar Racing ended their debut season bottom of the table, but only seven points off of seventh placed Andretti.
Only point scoring drivers and teams are shown.
Videos and Images:
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 'FIA RELEASES REVISED SEASON THREE CALENDAR: DATE SWAP FOR NEW YORK CITY AND MONTREAL', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 28/09/2016), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2016/september/fia-releases-revised-season-three-formula-e-calendar/, (Accessed 28/09/2016)
- ↑ 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 2.19 2.20 'Rosenqvist takes pole as Buemi struggles', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 30/07/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/july/rosenqvist-takes-pole-as-buemi-struggles/, (Accessed 30/07/2017)
- ↑ 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 'Vergne victorious, Di Grassi wins title', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 30/07/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/july/vergne-victorious-di-grassi-wins-title/, (Accessed 30/07/2017)
- ↑ 'FanBoost opens for second Montreal ePrix', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 29/07/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/july/fanboost-opens-for-second-montreal-eprix/, (Accessed 30/07/2017)
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 'R12: Montreal, CA - ePrix Race Results', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 29/07/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/results/race-results/season/2022016/round/12, (Accessed 29/07/2017)
- ↑ 6.00 6.01 6.02 6.03 6.04 6.05 6.06 6.07 6.08 6.09 6.10 6.11 6.12 6.13 6.14 'Buemi draws Group 1 for crucial qualifying', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 30/07/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/july/buemi-draws-group-1-for-crucial-qualifying/, (Accessed 30/07/2017)
- ↑ 'Rosenqvist heads final practice times', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 30/07/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/july/rosenqvist-heads-final-practice-times/, (Accessed 30/07/2017)