The stage is set for a thrilling Formula E season 5 finale in New York

Vergne could be the first ever Formula E driver to defend his title

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By Olivier Ferret

10 July 2019 - 11:32
The stage is set for a thrilling (...)

The final two rounds of the 2018/19 ABB FIA Formula E Championship will take place on the streets of Red Hook in Brooklyn this weekend (13-14 July). The most unpredictable, most competitive season so far will end with the crowning of the fifth FIA Formula E Champion.

The 2.32 km long circuit is set against the stunning backdrop of the Lower Manhattan skyline and the Statue of Liberty. While the track, with its 14 turns winding through the heart of Brooklyn, has a formidable reputation thanks mainly to its unforgiving concrete surface.

Last time out

Similar to this year, New York also hosted a double header season finale in 2018. Sam Bird and Jean-Eric Vergne went into the weekend as rivals for the championship title. In a day of high drama on the challenging circuit in Brooklyn, Vergne went from last on the grid thanks to a technical infringement during qualifying to finishing Saturday’s race in fifth place. Sam Bird was unable to capitalise on Vergne’s qualifying position, so the result was enough to put Vergne out of reach of his rival. Vergne won the title with the second race still to run. To top it off the Frenchman managed to finish the 2017/18 season on a high by winning the final race on Sunday, but Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler wrapped up the teams’ championship with second and third place for Lucas di Grassi and Daniel Abt respectively beating Vergne’s TECHEETAH team by a narrow two point margin.

Current standings

At the last outing of the current season, double points are again on offer as one race is held on Saturday and one on Sunday. Reigning champion Jean-Eric Vergne leads the way with his name at the top of the standings. He could be the first driver to defend his title and – for the first time in Formula E’s history – win the crown in two consecutive seasons. While the Frenchman has a comfortable margin, there are seven other drivers mathematically still in contention for the drivers’ championship title who will do everything in their power to beat the DS TECHEETAH driver. The team championship standings look equally as tight, four teams head into the season five finale still in with a chance of winning the title. DS TECHEETAH, who top the table travelling to New York will be doing their upmost to not lose out to Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler again this year.

While none of the drivers is American, there are two Formula E teams racing under an American flag: BMW i Andretti Motorsport and Geox Dragon. Neither of the two teams is in contention for the title anymore, but both will be eager to score the best possible results in front of their home crowd.

Gen2 debut season

The championship finale also marks the completion of a very successful debut season for the radical new Gen2 car, which was introduced at the start of season five. The futuristic looking FIA Formula E car has almost double the energy storage capacity in comparison to the first generation car and is able to go the whole race distance, making the mid-race car swaps of previous seasons a thing of the past! This leap forward in efficiency demonstrates the continuous progress made in the development of electric vehicle technologies and will benefit much more than world class racing drivers in the near future.

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