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Closed Circuit: NextEV NIO in Monaco

Focus | ePrix

  • Piquet came to blows with Vergne but still finished fourth
  • Turvey's day was ruined following a brush with the barrier in qualifying

After scoring its second pole position of the season in Mexico City, NextEV NIO were hopeful of a similarly strong performance in Monaco and ran at the sharp end with Nelson Piquet Jr while Oliver Turvey was hampered by a mistake in qualifying.

THE TEAM

The NextEV NIO have been doing everything they can to make the most of their improved car, with Piquet Jr contending for a podium in the early stages of the race before tangling with the Techeetah of Jean-Eric Vergne on lap 21.

The Brazilian was lucky to come away from the incident with only minor damage and held on to bring home fourth place, while on the other side of the garage Turvey, who took pole in Mexico City, looked to get into Super Pole again but tapped the wall on his flying lap and qualified 15th.

Progress in the race was hard to come by for the Englishman, who came home in 13th place and went away with a no-score for the first time this season.

Team mate comparison: qualifying

  • Nelson Piquet Jr
  • Oliver Turvey

Team mate comparison: race

  • Nelson Piquet Jr
  • Oliver Turvey

“Another tough day at the office for the NextEV NIO Formula-e Team. Qualifying was obviously another good session for Nelson but, unfortunately, Oliver damaged his suspension early in the first session and hence the rest of his qualifying lap was compromised. In the main Nelson’s race was uneventful, although the safety car being brought out put a twist on both his and the rest of the field’s race. Both Nelson and Oliver pitted on the same lap, Nelson re-joining the track in 4th position where he remained to the end of the race.

“Starting from 16th on the grid in Monaco was always going to be a tall order for Oliver. Having gained a few positions in the first stint, Oliver lost a position in the pit stops to Antonio Felix Da Costa, and re-joined the race in 12th position. Towards the end of the race Oliver was struggling with energy and as a result finished after the final lap in 13th position.”

Gérry Hughes, Team Principal

Championship standings

  • NextEV NIO

NELSON PIQUET JR

Having taken a podium in the inaugural Monaco ePrix en route to the championship crown, Piquet Jr went to Monaco looking for a repeat result after showing front-running pace already this season.

The Brazilian took a top five grid slot for the fourth time in season three and qualified his NextEV NIO in third behind the Renault e.dams of Sebastien Buemi and the ABT Schaeffler of Lucas di Grassi.

The race proved to be more tricky for Piquet Jr, as a battle with Vergne ended in tears as the Techeetah piled into the barrier as the two driver’s wheels tangled coming out of the hairpin.

Piquet Jr drove away unfazed by the incident and brought the car home in fourth place, but couldn’t contain his disappointment with his rival following the race.

Piquet Jr: lap chart

  • Nelson Piquet Jr

Best time in FP1: 54.229s (P9)

Best time in FP2: 53.217s (P8)

Best time in qualifying: 53.421s (P4, P3 in Super Pole)

Best time in the race: 55.272s (Lap 15)

Pit stop time and difference to minimum pit stop time: 54.573s (+1.573s)

I was a little cautious on my qualifying lap and so I knew there was a little bit more I could have got out of the car, but making it to Super Pole again and starting on the second row wasn’t bad at all. In the race, we got some good points in the bank, which is a real positive, but I don’t think we could have done any better. It was one of my toughest races – I spent the whole time looking in my mirrors. We have the qualifying pace, the car felt good the whole time, we just need to continue to work on our race performance.”

Championship standings

  • Nelson Piquet Jr

OLIVER TURVEY

Confidence was not in short supply for Turvey off the back of his maiden Formula E pole position in Mexico City, which was coupled with the Monaco track being one at which the Englishman has won before.

The day didn’t start off in the best way as Turvey was the innocent party in a heavy shunt with the Mahindra of Felix Rosenqvist, who piled into the back of the NextEV NIO at the hairpin.

Things didn’t get much better for Turvey, as a brush with the barrier left the 30-year-old lingering down in 15th on the grid and unable to make much progress through the field, ultimately coming home in 13th.

Turvey: lap chart

  • Oliver Turvey

Best time in FP1: 54.547s (P12)

Best time in FP2: 53.675s (P17)

Best time in qualifying: 54.522s (P15)

Best time in the race: 55.622s (Lap 20)

Pit stop time and difference to minimum pit stop time: 55.249s (+2.249s)

To start 15th in Monaco is always going to be difficult. It was a tough race but I moved forwards in the first few laps – in fact, in the first corner I gained two positions. We were trying to pick up as many positions in the race as we could. I felt we could have scored some points but, unfortunately, we were struggling with energy in the final few laps and it was disappointing to finish just outside of the points.”

Championship standings

  • Oliver Turvey

Topher Smith | e-racing.net

Images courtesy of Rajan Jangda

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