Mahindra Racing’s Bruno Senna finished P2 in today’s London ePrix, the first of two season finale races taking place in Battersea Park, London this weekend. Nick Heidfeld finished in P8 but was demoted to P13 following a time penalty after the race.
The first Formula E race to ever take place partially in the wet, the London ePrix was a thrilling spectacle, with many drivers struggling with grip on the wet and bumpy park surface. Starting in P2, Bruno Senna succeeded in building a substantial lead to the car behind to defend his potential podium finish. In the final laps, an incident on track caused
the safety car to be deployed, reducing the gap that Senna had built up, bringing him under pressure once more from cars behind. Senna defended his position and crossed the line to record his highest ever Formula E result and bring Mahindra Racing their second podium of the season.
#21 Bruno Senna said: “It feels fantastic to achieve this long overdue podium. Of course, I was lucky to complete my qualifying lap before the rain started to fall but today was about consistency and sticking to the plan. This is a difficult circuit to drive on the limit, especially in mixed weather conditions but we knew we had a set up that would allow us to
set a competitive qualifying time and give us the best start in the race.”
“This is yet another strong result which must be put down to each part of our team connecting the dots. Each incremental gain throughout the season has built up to this strong finish to the season. Of course, I’m aware that the British weather favoured me today but that doesn’t mean I won’t go out there and try to do exactly the same thing
Usually considered the most favourable qualifying group, the fourth and final qualifying group included Nick Heidfeld. With heavy rainfall before the start of the session, Heidfeld took to a damp track, navigating the slippery circuit and timing his 200kW qualifying run for the moment the track would be at its driest and achieving a starting position of P8
for the London ePrix. Heidfeld finished the race in P8 but was issued a 50 second time penalty after the race for a perceived excess use of power when triggering the FanBoost function in his car due to a software issue. He was finally classified in P13.
#23 Nick Heidfeld said: “It was a tricky day because of the unpredictable weather. This track is so tricky to overtake on and a strong starting position is so important and the rain made that especially difficult. All the street circuits we go to are different and the challenge is to work methodically to find the best set up for each track. The circuit was very similar to last year and is very bumpy.”
“Tomorrow, we have an opportunity to race again in similar conditions. We can learn from today and make some changes so I am optimistic for a strong day tomorrow. It is a shame to lose some positions and some points due to the penalty but we must accept the decision and move on and aim to end the season with the strong result we have proven we are capable of.”
Dilbagh Gill, Team Principal of Mahindra Racing Formula E Team, said: “This is a great result for the team. It bookends the season so far with strong podium finishes but it is also nice to build on the maiden win of our Mahindra Racing Moto3 colleagues last weekend. Though Mahindra’s race programme is still young, these results are a statement of intent of the level of performance we will expect in the future.”
“I was thrilled to see Bruno on the podium today. Bruno has made a significant contribution to the team since it’s formative days and it is right that he finally achieved his first Formula E podium and also recorded the highest ever finish for our team.”
“With one race remaining this season, we retain fifth in the FIA Formula E Championship but we have closed the gap to the team in front. Tomorrow we will be working hard to find every tenth we can and give the team ahead of us a run for their money.”