Berlin E-Prix: Mahindra slips behind Nissan after tough race

Rachit Thukral

Pascal Wehrlein bagged a solitary point for the Indian manufacturer in 10th, while Jerome d’Ambrosio finished 17th in a race with 20th classified finishers.

D’Ambrosio and Wehrlein started ninth and 10th respectively in Berlin, the venue where Mahindra scored its maiden Formula E win back in 2017.

However, the M5Electro simply lacked the pace of its direct rivals in the German capital this time, with incidents pushing their drivers further down the order.

D’Ambrosio was slow off the line when the race got underway, allowing Wehrlein through into ninth. However, Wehrlein had to immediately dissipate a threat from Nissan’s Oliver Rowland, the ex-Formula 1 driver hanging on to retain his position.

Later in the race, DS Techeetah driver Jean-Eric Vergne forcefully tried to repass Wehrlein shortly after activating the Attack Mode at the outside of turn _, unsettling the Mahindra driver in the process.

With the momentum lost, Wehrlein became vulnerable to Rowland at the following corner, the Nissan driver pushing Wehrlein towards the wall and allowing Alexander Sims to also sneak through.

After the dust from the aforementioned multi-car spat settled, Wehrlein re-passed HWA’s Gary Paffett and assumed 10th after Jaguar’s Alex Lynn stopped on track.

Lynn’s stranded car had to be removed with a crane, forcing organisers to deploy a full course yellow.

Wehrlein activated both his Attack Modes during the phase and had plenty of boost left once the track turned green again, but the next placed car of Sam Bird, who had passed Wehrlein early in the race, was simply too far up the road.

Wehrlein was forced to settle for 10th place for the third time in four races, adding a solitary point to Mahindra’s tally.

With Sebastien Buemi finishing second to race winner Jean-Eric Vergne and Rowland classified eighth, Nissan has eclipsed Mahindra for fourth in the teams’ standings.

In the drivers’ stake, Wehrlein holds 13th spot in the standings after missing the season opener in Riyadh, with ex-championship leader d’Ambrosio now running eighth.

D’Ambrosio lost a chunk of places in the second half of the race due to reasons unclear at the moment, and was never able to recover from the slump, finishing 17th at the flag.

The next round of Formula E will take place at Bern in Switzerland on June 22, before the championship heads to New York in July for the title-deciding double header.