BMW i Andretti Motorsport has lost an appeal on the penalty given to Alexander Sims’ for contact with Edoardo Mortara in Saturday’s Santiago E-Prix.
The team posted and paid for an official protest after the race believing that Sims did not hit the rear of Mortara’s Venturi VFE05.
The post-race penalty, which came in the form of a drive-through converted to a time penalty, cost Sims an initial third-place finish and dropped him to seventh in the final classification.
“Viewing additional video footage and the photos given by the competitor gave no new proof to change the Stewards Decision No. 13 which would have brought the competitor to another position in the result,’ stated a bulletin from the FIA.
Sims and Mortara were battling for fifth position when Mortara spun exiting the tight chicane after light contact from the nose of Sims’ BMW iFE.18.
Speaking immediately after the race and before seeing replays of the incident, Sims said that he didn’t feel the contact from his cockpit.
“Honestly, from my point of view, I felt no contact at all and I’m not just saying that to try to get out of the situation,” Sims told e-racing365.
“I was very, very surprised when he spun around.
“After some laps, I started to think that actually, it may have been the tarmac breaking up, because we had big issues in the race with the tarmac breaking up.
“It was a big surprise to get a penalty but we will have to take a look at the replay’s more. If I did cause him to spin then OK but it felt like there was no contact to me.”
Mortara, again speaking to e-racing365 straight after the race, countered that the touch had caused him to spin.
“That’s the reason why I spun,” he said. “Otherwise, you don’t spin that way in that corner.”
BMW i Andretti Motorsport team principal Roger Griffiths said that the team “respects the decision of the stewards. We will move on to the race in Mexico City.”