Misano E-Prix | Round 7 Race Report: Heartbreak for Rowland as Wehrlein takes second FE win of the season

Photo credits: Formula E | Simon Galloway
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It’s time for the second race of the weekend in Italy. Yesterday, after a dramatic post Round 6 twist due to on track winner Da Costa’s DSQ for running a not standard car pump, new championship leader Oliver Rowland inherited the race win.

Today the drivers will be able to push even more, as the race length has been shortened by 2 laps to 26 compared to round 6’s 28. Jake Hughes is starting from pole position, with Vergne a close second and Rowland a bit further at the back in P10.

At the beginning Hughes is able to hold on to his P1, with Bird up to P4 and Wehrlein overtaking Vergne. Buemi slightly runs off track, while Cassidy gets to P3 on Lap 2, becoming the driver who has gained more positions since the beginning of the race with 5 moves completed.

Evans, who had been yesterday on pole position but started in P15 today, mentions rechanging issues from his P19.

The first Attack Modes of the day are employed on Lap 3 by Hughes, Vergne, Muller and Da Costa. The Porsche driver is on fire today as well: after starting last due to his lap time getting deleted for track limits during Qualifying, he is now up to P12 after five laps.

Vergne and Wehrlein cycle at the lead, with the German taking up his first extra power boost on Lap 6 thus leaving the top spot to Cassidy. Wehrlein is also passed by ABT’s Muller, while Rowland, who has found his way up to P4, mentions that his brake pedal is feeling loose.

Photo credits: Formula E | Simon Galloway

Cassidy takes up his second attack mode as well, leaving Muller in the lead. The first safety car of the weekend is issued due to Frijns ending up in the gravel after being trapped and making contact with Bird and a Mahindra driver.

Racing resumed on Lap 9. Muller leads from Wehrlein and Cassidy, with Hughes and Rowland rounding up the top 5.

Muller concedes the lead as he takes up the extra power boost, leaving Cassidy in the lead and rejoining in P4. On Lap 10 Da Costa is now in the points scoring zone as he battles with Sette Camara for P10.

However, his race came to an end shortly after as he is pictured with smoking coming out of his front right tyre. Replays show him making contact from behind with Brid and braking off his front wing.

Gunther cuts through the chicane rejoining the grid in P8. On lap 13 Rowland gets the lead of the race, while Nato suffers from the same exact issue of Da Costa, with his broken wing troubling his front right tyre due to contact with Vergne.

Both drivers manage to crawl back to the pits for new car parts, whereas Dennis slots into P2. Vandoorne pits as Muller and Hughes slightly collide, losing a bit of time but remaining in the race.

It’s a tough moment for both McLaren drivers, as Bird and Buemi come into contact, with the Swiss driver forced to retire the car from the pits and the Brit losing 7 places and exiting the points scoring P10.

With ten laps to go, Wehrlein overtakes Dennis for P2 as Evans stops on track. The German driver moves on to battle with the Nissan driver in P1, and is successful in making his second move stick.

The Jaguar driver is able to resume his race without the need for a safety car, while the top 2 duo is distancing themselves from the rest of the grid by a second, with Rowland, who is sporting 2% more energy than Wehrlein, returns in the lead with four laps to go.

Bird spins on track but is able to resume his race and goes on to sign the fastest lap as Da Costa pits again.

In spite of the safety car, no extra lap were added to the full race length, as we near the end of the race with the following top ten: Rowland, Wehrlein, Dennis, Muller, Gunther, Cassidy, Hughes, Vergne, Sette Camara and Fenestraz. Di Grassi gets a 5s time penalty for causing a collision.

Muller engages Dennis for the final podium position, while the race leader has a second and a half on Wehrlein just as the Nissan driver unexpectedly slows down on track. Cassidy battles with Muller for P3 and manages to overtake him right at the finish line.

It’s heartbreak for Rowland, as after leading for the most part of the race he ran out of battery on the final lap, allowing Wehrlein to avenge Da Costa and Porsche’s missed top spot from yesterday. Dennis is a solid second ahead of late improved Cassidy, which leaves an unsatisfied Muller in P4 ahead of Hughes.

Nissan’s best finisher of the day becomes Sacha Fenestraz in P6, followed by Sette Camara, Vergne and the Maserati duo of Gunther and Daruvala.

The first post race penalty however sees pole sitter Jake Hughes getting a 5 seconds time penalty for leaving the track and gaining advantage, dropping to P8.