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Double points finish for DS Virgin Racing in Berlin

10.06.2017
DOUBLE POINTS FINISH FOR DS VIRGIN RACING IN BERLIN

•    Fourth & seventh for DS Virgin Racing drivers Jose Maria Lopez & Sam Bird in round 7
•    Lopez misses out on pole by 0.001s in series’ closet ever qualifying session
•    DS Virgin Racing fourth in team standings after first of two races at Tempelhof Airport

DS Virgin Racing drivers Jose Maria Lopez and Sam Bird secured a double-points finish during today’s FIA Formula E Berlin ePrix to strengthen its fourth position in the team standings.

In the first of two races held at Berlin’s Tempelhof Airport, Lopez narrowly missed out on a podium finish with fourth place, with team-mate Bird battling to P7. 

The day began strongly for the team showing good pace in both of the morning’s free practice sessions, which continued through to qualifying. Indeed, both drivers made it through to the Super Pole shootout – the second time this season – with Lopez unbelievably missing out on the top spot by a mere thousandth of a second (the equivalent distance of 3cm) in Formula E’s closest ever qualifying session.

As the race got underway, Lopez unfortunately got a poor getaway allowing Bird – starting P5 – to go side-by-side into the first corner with the two emerging fourth and fifth respectively. The two DSV-02 cars ran nose-to-tail for the entire first half, pitting on lap 22, but whereas Lopez retained his P4 slot, Bird had to wait to avoid an unsafe release dropping him down the order. 

Undeterred, Bird immediately gained a place back passing Abt driver Daniel Abt but the Briton struggled towards the end, holding on to cross the line P8. However, two post-race penalties for Techeetah’s Jean-Eric Vergne and Renault e.dam’s Sebastien Buemi saw the Briton promoted to P7. 

Lopez said: “I was very slow pulling away which cost me and then the Mahindra drivers were able to pull away so it was a good result considering. We’ve managed to be consistent in the last few races so the pace is there, we just need that extra step but if we keep going in this direction we’re going to have the victory we deserve. The team have done a great job and we have a ‘rematch’ tomorrow so we will work tonight to see where we can make improvements.�??

Bird said: “It’s not been an ideal afternoon and we lost positions in the pit stop. We worked hard to gain the ground back up but we couldn’t make up any more places before the end. Tomorrow we need to work on qualifying at the front and to dictate the race from there so we’ll see what we can do.�??

DS Virgin Team Principal Alex Tai said: “Following our podium in Paris last time out, the team have worked really hard to carry that momentum through to Berlin, which certainly showed in our pace, especially in qualifying! We know we have a quick car and will certainly be battling amongst the top three again tomorrow.�?? 

Xavier Mestelan Pinon, DS Performance Director, added: “It was great to have both cars in the Super Pole so we’ll look to come out fighting tomorrow and aim to climb onto the podium. We will now focus on analysing the data from today to see where we can make improvements for tomorrow’s race, in particular around Lopez’s start and the race pace.�??

Round eight of the Formula E series takes place tomorrow (June 11) at Berlin’s Tempelhof Airport.
 
2017 FIA Formula E Berlin ePrix (Rd 7) - Race Results

1. Felix Rosenqvist, Mahindra Racing, 44 laps             
2. Lucas di Grassi, ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport, +2.232s         
3. Nick Heidfeld, Mahindra Racing, +4.058s            
4. Jose Maria Lopez, DS Virgin Racing, +13.638s                        
5. Nico Prost, Renault e.dams, +19,068s                
6. Daniel Abt, ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport, +19.799s            
7. Sam Bird, DS Virgin Racing, +20.065s                
8. Jean-Eric Vergne, TECHEETAH, +20.689s            
9. Maro Engel, Venturi Formula E, +39.030s            
10. Oliver Turvey, NEXTEV NIO, +40.985s  
         
Driver standings (after Rd 7)
1. Sebastien Buemi, Renault e.dams – 132pts            
2. Lucas di Grassi, ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport – 110pts 
3. Nico Prost, Renault e.dams – 68pts
4. Felix Rosenqvist, Mahindra Racing – 65pts
5. Nick Heidfeld, Mahindra Racing – 62pts
6. Jean-Eric Vergne, TECHEETAH – 44pts
7. Sam Bird, DS Virgin Racing – 41pts 
8. Jose Maria Lopez, DS Virgin Racing – 40pts 
9. Daniel Abt, Abt Schaeffler Audi Sport – 34pts 
10. Nelson Piquet Jr, NEXTEV NIO – 33pts 
 
Team standings (after Rd 7)
1. Renault e.dams – 200
2. ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport – 144
3. Mahindra Racing – 127
4. DS Virgin Racing – 81
5. TECHEETAH – 49
6. NETEV NIO  – 49
7. Andretti Formula E – 26
8. Panasonic Jaguar Racing – 20
9. Venturi Formula E – 19
10. Faraday Future Dragon Racing – 19
 
2017 Formula E Berlin ePrix - Rd 8 - Schedule
Sunday June 11
08:00 – 08:45     Free Practice 1
10:30 – 11:00     Free Practice 2
12:00 – 13:00     Qualifying
             16:00     Race (46 laps)
-ENDS-
 
For more information on the DS Virgin Racing Formula E Team, please visit the website:
http://www.ds-virginracing.com
For further information please contact:
Tom Phillips
PR & Communications Manager
DS Virgin Racing
E : tom.phillips@ds-virginracing.com     
T: +44 (0) 7496 972 965
 
About Virgin group:
Virgin is a leading international investment group and one of the world's most recognised and respected brands. Conceived in 1970 by Sir Richard Branson, the Virgin Group has gone on to grow successful businesses in sectors including mobile telephony, travel & transportation, financial services, leisure & entertainment and health & wellness.

About DS AUTOMOBILES
A French brand born in Paris, DS was founded on 1 June 2014. Its ambition is to embody the French know-how of luxury in its cars. Driven by its outstanding heritage and avant-garde spirit, DS perpetuates the values of innovation and distinction inherited from the first DS, launched in 1955.

Designed for customers looking for a means to express themselves as individuals, the DS Collection comprises DS 3, DS 3 CABRIO, DS 4, DS 4 CROSSBACK, DS 4S, DS 5, DS 5LS, DS 6 and completed with DS 7 CROSSBACK. The models in the DS range stand apart through their avant-garde design, refinement and attention to detail, advanced technology and dynamic serenity.

Presented at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show, DS 7 CROSSBACK, the SUV by DS featuring Parisian-style innovation and savoir-faire, ushers in the second generation of DS models. With the DS 7 CROSSBACK La Première limited edition model, forward thinkers can reserve their car online or at a DS Store or DS Salon, and be the first to get behind the wheel. Committed to high-performance hybrid and electric cars, the Brand will launch the DS 7 CROSSBACK equipped with E-Tense, the hybrid powertrain by DS, in 2019.

DS models are available from DS Stores, DS Salons and a selection of other dedicated spaces within the Citroën network. DS also has a flagship store, DS WORLD PARIS. DS represents a brand experience that goes beyond the products to include ONLY YOU, a collection of exclusive services showcased at the 2016 Paris Motor Show.

Follow all DS news on www.DSautomobiles.com    @DS_Official

About the FIA Formula E Championship:
The FIA Formula E Championship is the world’s first fully-electric single-seater racing series, competing on the streets in the backdrop of some of the most iconic cities - including Hong Kong, Marrakesh, Buenos Aires, Monaco, Paris, Montreal and New York. The championship represents a vision for the future of the motor industry, serving as a platform to showcase the latest innovations in electric vehicle technology and alternative energy solutions. Future seasons will see the regulations open up further allowing manufacturers to focus on the development of motor and battery components, which in turn will filter down to everyday contemporary electric road vehicles.

The 2016/17 FIA Formula E Championship sees 10 teams and 20 drivers go wheel-to-wheel in 12 cities spanning five continents in the fight to be crowned Formula E champion. The inaugural season of Formula E sparked into life in September 2014 around the grounds of the Olympic Park in Beijing. The third season of the all-electric racing series gets underway on October 9 in Hong Kong, with the season finale double-header in New York on July 29 & 30.
 
About FIA & Michelin - Today’s partners for tomorrow’s mobility:
As well as being the official Formula E tyre supplier, Michelin is an official partner, at the international level, of the FIA Action for Road Safety campaign. The programme is designed to support the Decade of Action for Road Safety initiated by the UN, the aim of which is to save five million lives over the next 10 years. This programme is set up to educate and advocate for safer roads, vehicles and behaviours around the globe.