Start, Formula E, Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, 2020

Evans dominates wild Mexico EPrix and takes title lead by a point

Formula E

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Mitch Evans took his and Jaguar’s second Formula E win in emphatic style in a chaotic Mexican EPrix.

He had been beaten to pole position by Porsche’s Andre Lotterer earlier in the morning, but the Jaguar driver got the better of him at the start.

Lotterer tried to close the door on him, damaged front win. He ran wide again at the new, double-right-angled hairpin and dropped further down the order, recovering at one point from sixth.

Turn one saw more drama as Nico Mueller crashed heavily while trying to pass Nyck de Vries, dramatically destroying an embedded camera and triggering a Safety Car period. Once his car had been recovered the race resumed with 35 minutes left on the clock, and drivers saw their power allocation deducted by 5kWh accordingly for the remainder of the race.

Sam Bird took advantage of the restart, staying close to third-placed Lotterer. The Porsche driver’s race cotninue to unravel as first Bird got by in the stadium, and then his team mate. They set about chasing Sebastien Buemi for second, and that fight gave Evans a breather to extend his lead to just over two seconds.

Lotterer’s race was already going badly when he collided with a barrier, got tangled in an advertising hoarding and damaged his front wing. He tried to continue, shedding smoke and bodywork much as Jean-Eric Vergne did last time out in Santiago, but was eventually ordered to pit for repairs, emerging dead last.

With 20 minutes to go, De Vries tangled with Da Costa and then Frijns, ending his race in the barriers much as Daniel Abt did in second practice, though not at such high speed. That let Da Costa move forward, and he set off in pursuit of third-placed Buemi. Evans’ lead, with 15 minutes remaining, was now a healthy four-and-a-half seconds.

DS Techeetah tied itself in knots over its team orders plan. Da Costa and Vergne, both in pursuit of Buemi, hotly debated the correct order with their engineers. A swap was arranged – Da Costa letting Vergne through – which allowed the Nissan EDams driver to draw away. Not long afterwards, Da Costa repassed his team mate…

[smr2020test]Using his Attack Mode, Da Costa reeled in Buemi, and having dispensed with the Nissan then made up the three seconds to Bird in second. The two were side by side as Bird took his final Attack Mode and continued together until Bird lost control, hitting the barrier. He got the Virgin car going again but was relegated to seventh, with Di Grassi on his tail with less than four minutes remaining.

Bird once again hit the barriers with a little over two minutes to go, bringing out a yellow flag out at turn 13, but race director Scott Elkan opted against neutralising proceedings. That left enough time for pre-race points leader Stoffel Vandoorne to become the final driver to fall victim of the slippery surface and much-abused barriers, throwing yet more debris onto the track. While Vandoorne slipped down the order, Evans’ lead allowed him to driver a cautious final tour and still come home comfortably ahead.

Evans was followed home by Da Costa, Buemi, Vergne and Sims, the latter making a superb recovery effort after a disastrous qualifying left him 18th on the grid. Evans also bagged the fastest lap, means he narrowly takes the championship lead by a single point from Vandoorne.

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Hazel Southwell
Hazel is a freelance journalist who roams the paddocks of Formula E, covering the technical and emotional elements of electric racing. Usually found at...

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  • 14 comments on “Evans dominates wild Mexico EPrix and takes title lead by a point”

    1. there’s still far too much contact in the series for me to be able to get into it as much as i otherwise maybe would.

      everytime i try to sit down and watch i’m either put off by the terrible circuit or by how much contact & accidents tends to happen. then the gimmicks come into play & i tend to just turn off before the end.

      electric power may be part of the future of the sport and i don’t really have issue with that but i certainly hope the future of the sport isn’t what formula e are putting on currently because the contact, the circuits, the gimmicks & the spec cars are all a turn off for me unfortunately.

      1. I totally agree. I haven’t seen a race without full course yellows or a SC. Will the result be changed 2 hours after the finish, which has become the norm.

        The circuits lack character, they remind me of the infamous Vegas F1 ‘car park’ race. If FomulaE wants to be taken seriously, they need to dump the gimmicks and race on proper tracks. I dread to think what the London Dockland’s circuit will be like. I have visions of it coming across like a Hollywood movie car chase, as they circulate round and round derelict warehouses.

        1. All those derelict warehouses are now overpriced flats and very twee indeed. From what I’ve seen the London race will be like a big supermarket car park with the added excitement of going through the supermarket itself for part of the race.
          Most of the circuits (and races) are more like the Wacky Races – amusing but not very important. Especially with the Jaguar ipace race. That’s like going to a dog track expecting to see greyhounds racing and finding that they are fat labradors. Its hilarious.
          The whole show is still too contrived to be taken seriously. I watch it because its entertaining, in the same way as I watch Top Gear, but don’t regard it as a serious motoring show.

      2. This, sums it up perfectly, I couldn’t have said it better myself

    2. Another entertaining race. Evans showed quality by getting ahead then staying there. Massa showed his lack of comfort with this form of racing yet again, and Bird got very unlucky off the racing line. It was a great battle for the best of the rest. Such a shame for Vandoorne too!

      The cars looked faster around the Mexico circuit this year – that’s probably mostly the camera angle and the removal of the chicane at the end of the lap.

    3. Race was too late in night(230hrs IST) to watch so will be watching highlights in morning. Seems like Santiago another entertaining race.

    4. Vergne and team orders, normal at this point, he is the established driver and DS is french, thats how the world works

    5. Evans also bagged the fastest lap, means he narrowly takes the championship lead by a single point from Vandoorne.

      I get that the race was late at night and Hazel was probably very tired, but this entire last paragraph is just simply incorrect: Evans didn’t bag the fastest lap in Mexico (Sims did) and Vandoorne is not 2nd in the championsip (Sims is).

    6. Can’t believe anyone seriously watches this showcase of amateurism.

      1. I can’t believe anyone would dismiss this amount of fun and action so snobbishly

        1. I can’t believe it’s not butter

    7. How good was it to watch a race that was on a track wider than my driveway for a change.

    8. It’s entertaining when there’s nothing else going on in January and February. Actually qualifying is pretty good in itself – the cars were sliding through Peraltada.

      Yes wider and bigger tracks would help a lot, though. Surely they will have to try it eventually.

      1. you should have checked Toyota New Zealand series. some really good talent. racing was great on some tracks. Asian F3 had an epic race in Dubai few weeks ago.
        When was the last time Evans and Evans won on the same weekend?

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