The Santiago round of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship was a story of highs and lows for the Nissan e.dams team. The hot, intense and action-packed race was a thriller for the fans, but ultimately the race was challenging.
Round three of the championship, held at the fast Parque O’Higgins circuit, basked in bright sunshine for every session making energy management a key tactical element, while a slippery track surface caught several drivers out.
Away from the track, the passionate, vibrant Chilean fans gave the teams and drivers their usual warm welcome in Santiago, filling the E-Village with colour and excitement.
Similar to last season, Nissan entertained fans with a prominent and engaging Formula E brand activation display in the E-Village. The second-generation Nissan LEAF road car took center stage on the Nissan show stand.
Nissan is using the championship to demonstrate the performance side of Nissan Intelligent Mobility, the brand’s vision for changing how cars are driven, powered and integrated into society.
Sebastien Buemi earned his second Super Pole qualifying session of the season, starting from 6th position and spent much of the race battling hard with the cars around him. The racing was exciting, but ultimately the intensity of the competition and a 30-second time penalty for a technical infraction cost Buemi the 7th position he took at the finish line, to place 13th.
Buemi’s teammate and last season’s rookie of the year, Oliver Rowland, pushed hard for pace in his qualifying group, but a slide saw him make contact with the wall, resulting in a starting position of 23rd on the final grid.
The British racer, now in his second season with the team took consolation in demonstrating his strong pace today with the fastest lap of the race, and by topping the time sheets in the second free practice session. Rowland eventually took the flag in 17th position after racing contact damaged his front wing, costing him a drive-through penalty and several laps lost.
“Santiago has proven a challenging race for the team. Both drivers showed pace and our race car showed itself to be among the quickest with Oli behind the wheel. But, ultimately, some mistakes and technical issues cost us what could have been a solid haul of points. The drivers are disappointed, but we take some satisfaction in our fastest lap and can look to Mexico next month knowing that we have the tools to compete at the front of the field,” said Nissan global motorsports director, Michael Carcamo.
With the pit lane as the backdrop, the second-generation LEAF and Sebastien Buemi’s race car #23 were pictured together to demonstrate the shared DNA of both vehicles.
“We faced many challenges as a team today in Santiago. We fought hard and showed good pace, but ultimately the mistakes we made and some technical issues with Seb’s car saw us miss out on the points. With work to do in the simulator and positives about our car’s speed, we now look forward to Mexcio,” said Nissan e.dams team principal Olivier Driot.
“A disappointing day for me as we had potential to score good points. My mistake in qualifying put us on the back foot, and then the contact with another car in the race dropped us down the field. I’m putting this race behind me and concentrating on Mexico.”
“This was a tough day. I started in P6, but then had a bad start with lots of wheelspin. After that, we had a technical issue with the steering wheel which cost me a few positions. I was able to salvage a few points at the end and finish P7, but the time penalty took us out of the points. A frustrating day but we now look forward to the next round in Mexico.”