Stoffel Vandoorne Earns Mecerdes-Benz EQ First Formula E Victory

A series of first continued at the Berlin E-Prix Thursday for the final round of season six in the Formula E electric series. Stoffel Vandoorne capitalized on pole position and gave Mercedes-Benz EQ their first overall career victory after leading lights out, and having a clean race in the German’s hometown, but had to hold off a hard-charging Buemi in the end.

“We had the perfect race, no threats from behind, Seb (Buemi) was always close but we had him under control,”. We couldn’t have dreamt of a better way to finish the season than with a 1-2 for Mercedes-Benz EQ Formula E Team. Being second in the championship it’s definitely a bonus. Over the past week we had showed we had a good race pace but to execute that from the front whilst leading the race it’s quite different. I’m super happy we managed to pull that off. The whole team has done a fantastic job, I have been struggling in qualifying in the past couple of races but today everything was picture perfect!”

Vandoorne’s perfect day started with qualifying when the German set a lap time of 1:15.717, which was also Mercedes-Benz’s first-ever pole position as well in the series.

Once the lights went out for Round 11 in Berlin, there was some intense action near the podium spot. Four drivers would battle for third, with those being Wednesday’s podium finish Rene Rast, then Nyck de Vries, Robin Frijns, and Edoardo Mortara. Through the first 10 mins of the race, Mercedes de Vries and Vandoorne made up the top two spots with everyone else chasing them down.

As Vandoorne and de Vries were trying to lock out the top spots, they had to fend off a charging Sebastien Buemi who had a great car throughout the event. Buemi actually at one point in the race, passed Vandoorne for a short period of time. The Switzerland native, however, gave up the lead after using ATTACK Mode, which put Vandoorne back in the first place.

Meanwhile, the DS Techeetah of Jean-Eric Vergne, and BMW i Andretti’s Alexander Sims had a battle for position in the back of the pack. At some point during the battle, the two caused a collision with another car, and FIA officials wound up giving Vergne a warning for the incident.

With time winding down in the season finale, there were some intense moments, especially one that could have brought out the safety car. Wednesday’s winner Oliver Rowland, had a wheel cover come off his Nissan e.dams entry, which was left out on the track. The moment definitely increased intensity for drivers, not knowing whether or not the race pace would be slowed. However, series officials let the race remain green. For Rowland, his day was cut short, and out of the event early.

Back up front, the battle for podiums heated up again with Buemi moving all the way to second, and able to get by de Vries with around 10 minutes remaining. During that same moment, drivers Lucas di Grassi and Robin Frijns almost wrecked each other in of the turns. In fact, di Grassi’s car actually touched Frijns machine, which caused Frijns to receive a left-front tire puncture while battling for sixth place. Though, Frijns puncture would only get worse and caused him to lockup in the hairpin with Maximilian Günther.

On lap 33, just a few laps before the checkered flag flew, de Vries got back around Buemi for second. Once the time expired and all drivers crossed the line, it was de Vries who finished second in the running order, thus helping Mercedes-Benz EQ to grab their first-ever 1-2 finish.

“Phew! What a relief,”! de Vries said. “All the pressure just melted away once I’d crossed the finish line. On previous occasions, I’ve often got close to finishing on the podium, but unfortunately, it just never happened for me, so it feels really good to have finally succeeded to conclude this long and grueling marathon. We did well with energy management, and I was able to keep closing on Stoffel towards the end of the race. Our strategy paid off in this instance. Overtaking is harder on this track layout than on the first two that we raced on, which is why we thought we could see a chance of finishing second, and luckily, our plan worked out. I wasn’t completely free of error this week, so it feels really great to hit back with such an amazing race today. The season was a little bit of a roller-coaster for me, so it’s nice to end it with my first podium, our first one-two win, and P3 in the team championship. I think we really deserved this result and I’m very pleased for the whole team. We couldn’t have wished for a better end to our season before this final round kicked off.”

Team Principle, Ian James is ecstatic for the teams first victory.

“What a phenomenal result at the end of a very unique event,” James said. “Huge congratulations to Stoffel for his first win. What’s more, than we can finally celebrate the first-ever fully-electric race win for Mercedes-Benz Motorsports. Also huge congratulations as well for Nyck for securing P2. These combined efforts pushed us to P3 in the Team Championship and Stoffel even clinched P2 in the Driver Championship. After all the hard work and trials and tribulations of the last days, a fantastic result. Finishing P1 and P2 today is something that the team have worked hard for and they absolutely deserve it.”
“We now look forward to getting Season 7 underway. There’s a lot of hard work ahead of us before then but we’ve also learned a huge amount through the ups and downs we had during Season 6. I’d like to add my congratulations once again to DS Techeetah for the Team Championship and of course to Antonio Felix da Costa for the Driver Championship.”

Even though Mercedes-Benz EQ enjoyed season-ending success, Antonio Felix da Costa remained the champion, as he locked the driver’s championship a few races early.

DS TECHEETAH Celebrates Season six Championship, Courtesy of Formula E

Official Results following the season six finale

  1. Stoffel Vandoorne
  2. Nyck de Vries
  3. Sebastien Buemi
  4. Rene Rast
  5. Sam Bird
  6. Lucas di Grassi
  7. Jean-Eric Vergne
  8. Alex Lynn
  9. Antonio Felix da Costa
  10. Edoardo Mortara
  11. Mitch Evans
  12. Maximilian Günther
  13. Alexander Sims
  14. Andre Lotterer
  15. Neel Jani
  16. Felipe Massa
  17. Tom Blomqvist
  18. Jerome D’Ambrosio
  19. Sergio Sette Camara
  20. Daniel Abt
  21. Oliver Turvey
  22. Nico Mueller

Did Not Finish

  1. Robin Frijns
  2. Oliver Rowland

Final Drivers Championship

  1. Antonio Felix da Costa, 158 points
  2. Stoffel Vandoorne, 87 points
  3. Jean-Eric Vergne, 86 points
  4. Sebastien Buemi, 84 points
  5. Oliver Rowland, 83 points
  6. Lucas di Grassi, 77 points
  7. Mitch Evans, 71 points
  8. Andre Lotterer, 71 points
  9. Maximilian Guenther, 69 points
  10. Sam Bird, 63 points
  11. Nyck de Vries, 60 points
  12. Robin Frijns, 58 points
  13. Alexander Sims, 49 points
  14. Rene Rast, 29 points
  15. Jerome D’Ambrosio, 19 points
  16. Pascal Wehrlein, 14 points
  17. James Calado, 10 points
  18. Neel Jani, 8 points
  19. Daniel Abt, 8 points
  20. Felipe Massa, 3 points
  21. Brendon Hartley, 2 points
  22. Nico Mueller, 0 points
  23. Ma Qing Hua, 0 points
  24. Tom Blomqvist, 0 points
  25. Sergio Sette Camara, 0 points

Up Next: The FIA ABB Formula E Series now heads into their off-season after a successful nine days of racing in Berlin and prepare for season seven, which is tentatively scheduled for January 16, 2021 at Santiago.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of


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