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Guenther Takes First Win With Last-Lap Pass

Max Guenther becomes youngest ever Formula E winner in Santiago…

Photo: Formula E

Max Guenther has become the youngest winner in ABB FIA Formula E Championship history with a last-lap move for the lead in the Santiago E-Prix on Saturday.

The 22-year-old passed Antonio Felix da Costa with three corners to go in the Chilean capital to give BMW I Andretti Motorsport its second consecutive win.

He ran in the top three early in the race but passed pole-sitter and early leader Mitch Evans at the halfway point using Attack Mode on the sweeping back straight, before pulling off a move on da Costa at the same part of the track 25 minutes later.

DS Techeetah’s da Costa made his way to the top of the field by initially passing Evans, whose pace dropped off throughout the race as the Kiwi focused on energy conservation.

With two minutes plus one lap on the clock, the Portuguese driver then made a forceful move for the lead at one of the hairpins, pushing Guenther aside.

While the two drivers had similar battery levels in the final laps, da Costa was forced to deal with a potentially overheating battery and so had to ease off the power.

This allowed Guenther to make a move around the outside on the back straight before consolidating his lead in the second half of the final lap, to take his maiden Formula E victory.

Former BMW driver da Costa finished 2.067 seconds behind his replacement, while Panasonic Jaguar Racing’s Evans completed the podium.

The race had one brief Full Course Yellow period early on to retrieve Alexander Sims’ stricken BMW iFE.20 although a number of drivers retired with damage.

One of these was reigning champion Jean-Eric Vergne, who picked up left-front damage on his DS Techeetah car but continued driving around the track until the wheel housing came off on-track.

Despite losing the troublesome piece of bodywork, the Frenchman then decided to pit and end his race early. The debris remained on-track with no intervention to collect it from halfway down the back straight.

Nyck de Vries and Pascal Wehrlein completed the top five, ahead of Stoffel Vandoorne, Sebastien Buemi and Lucas di Grassi.

Neel Jani was another retirement after dropping out on the first lap with damage from a mid-pack bunch-up at one of the hairpins.

RESULTS: Santiago E-Prix

Jake Kilshaw is a UK-based journalist who is e-racing365's Managing Editor and also European Editor for Sportscar365. He is a student of Politics and International Relations at the University of Birmingham. Contact Jake

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