Pascal Wehrlein won the 50th Formula E race
(Motorsport-Total.com) – The Porsche train keeps rolling over in Formula E! After Jake Dennis won the season opener in Mexico, the competition didn’t stand a chance against the Porsche in the first two races in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia. Pascal Wehrlein won the second race of the 2023 season on Friday ahead of world championship leader Dennis in a customer Porsche Andretti.
© Motorsport Pictures
Pascal Wehrlein won his 50th Formula E race
What should intimidate the competition: Both drivers started only in the middle of the field, but were able to show their superiority in the race. Jaguar’s Sam Bird was leading until the 30th lap, but the Briton had to concede defeat first to Wehrlein, then to Dennis and watch them win in the closing stages.
The German rejoiced after his success on “ran.de”: “I still really can’t believe it.” “I was sure we could make a ninth-place finish, but the car was simply fantastic. I’ve never had such a great race.”
Dennis pressed on in the final laps, but Wehrlein came back with his second Formula E victory of his 50th race by half a second. Bird finished in third place, but had to let the other two go by 3.5 seconds in just a few laps.
Fourth place was won by Envision driver Sebastien Buemi, who started the race from pole position on his 100th Formula E start, but also had no chance there. Fifth place was won by McLaren’s Rene Rast, who was only able to beat Nick Cassidy (VI/Envision) by a hair’s length. Two-time Formula E champion Jean-Eric Vergne (DS Penske) finished seventh, ahead of Jake Hughes (eighth) in his McLaren.
The Briton also fell victim to a somewhat weaker racing pace after starting the race from the front row as well.
Not a complete victory for Porsche
However, not everything was going smoothly for Porsche in Riyadh: Andre Lotterer (Andretti) was only ninth, while Antonio Félix da Costa (Porsche) was only scribbling eighteenth and had to get a new front wing.
Earlier, Mitch Evans (Jaguar) forced Rast out in Turn 1, which caused some chaos between the Mahindras, causing Da Costa to rear-end. Evans received a five-second time penalty for the action, dropping him to tenth place.
World Champion Stoffel Vandoorne (DS Penske) ended up outside the points in 11th, just as Lucas di Grassi (13/Mahindra) and Kelvin van der Linde, who stood in for the injured Robin Frijns in the Abt Cobra and finished 16th without a major. drove an error.
An early end for Müller, Gunther had to do without
His teammate Nico Muller had to stop the Abt Cobra just before the halfway point of the race. The Swiss was unable to take part in qualifying after his accident in the second practice session, and now he has paid the price for that in the race: “It’s a black day,” annoyed “run.de”.
Although Abt had fixed his car for racing, “on the formation lap it looked as if something was still broken,” says Mueller. “The car was making weird noises and I was getting slower and slower on the straight.” For safety reasons, it was requested that the car be entered into the garage.
For Maximilian Günther (Maserati), the race actually ended before the start: after his accident in qualifying, the German could not take part in the race because his car was not suitable for the race in time.
In the overall standings, Dennis leads the show with 44 points, followed by Wehrlein with 43 points. Third-placed Buemi is already a little behind with 23 points. The next race is tomorrow, Saturday (6pm CET).