Formula E

De Vries finishes 2nd Formula E race in Shanghai without points due to Bird crash, but remains positive

Tobias Wirtz

Tobias Wirtz

For the first time since 2022, Nyck de Vries made it into the duel phase of Formula E qualifying on Sunday. Position 4 was by far the best grid position for the Dutchman this season. But the 2021 Formula E champion's hopes of a second top 10 result in Shanghai were abruptly ended by Sam Bird.

After de Vries managed to stay in the top five in the first third of the race, he lost a little ground after his attack mode expired. Nevertheless, he remained in the top 10 despite the less efficient Mahindra drive and fought close battles with Max Günther and Jean-Eric Vergne. On lap 16, however, there was contact with Sam Bird in turn 10: The McLaren driver misjudged his attack on Robin Frijns and hit de Vries in front. The Mahindra driver had no chance.

While Bird had to park his car in the pits, de Vries was able to continue after a spin and finished the race in 16th place. Nevertheless, he left Shanghai satisfied, having scored his first points of the season the day before.

"If you look at the weekend as a whole, it is obvious that we are still on the right track and making progress," said de Vries. "We executed both races very well from a strategic point of view, scored our first points of the season in one of them and improved in qualifying by reaching the semi-finals today."

"Of course we would have liked more"

"Of course we would have liked more," he admits, without explicitly referring to the situation with Bird. "But there are a lot of positives that we can take with us for the remaining races in Portland and London." Even when asked by, Mahindra did not provide a statement on the accident.

Bird, who had previously slashed Pascal Wehrlein's rear tyre, but went unpunished in that situation, was handed a penalty for his next Formula E race by the race stewards: The Brit will have to move back five positions - most likely in Portland. In addition, he received two further penalty points on his racing licence and now stands at seven points.

In five weeks, the 2024 Formula E World Championship will enter the decisive phase with its two final "double-headers". After the two races in Portland, the season finale will take place in London.

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