Oliver Turvey says the pile-up at the hairpin in today’s ABB FIA Formula E Championship Rome E-Prix was unavoidable and caused, in part, by him running out of energy.
Turvey headed into the hairpin towards the end of his first stint in between Jose Maria Lopez and Nick Heidfeld, which led to the NIO and Mahindra Racing drivers colliding into the barrier.
Other drivers, including Edoardo Mortara and Turvey’s NIO teammate Luca Filippi, were also involved in the crash.
“We were really tight on energy at the end of the first stint,” Turvey explained to e-racing365.
“I defended on the inside and Nick went on the outside, and then at the last minute, Lopez came down the inside.
“I was in the middle of the two of them, and just trying to avoid any contact. I got sandwiched in the middle and Lopez hit me on the inside which then pushed me into Nick.
“I was trying to avoid either but when you’re in the middle, it’s very difficult. I kind of got squeezed from both sides and had nowhere to go.
“It was an unfortunate incident and a shame for all of us because we ended up with damage and losing time.”
Heidfeld believes the problem was down to Turvey’s slow pace, caused by him running out of energy in his first car at that stage of the race.
“Turvey was running very low on energy so this is why we caught up with him very, very quickly,” he told e-racing365.
“A couple of cars overtook him, [Jean-Eric Vergne] overtook him just in front of me, and then he had to come off the throttle very early into the hairpin.
“He obviously tried to block in the inside as you would do, and he lifted so early that I had to go on the outside. I left him plenty of space in the corner and then he just went straight.
“I will speak to him but my assumption is that he was so low on regeneration that he had too much forward brake balance and couldn’t turn anymore but it was a bit strange because I felt really slow.”
This incident came after a promising start to the race for Turvey who made two positions into the hairpin at the start, moving him up to fifth.
“The start was great, I saw a gap on the outside and just went for it,” he said. “I knew it was a tight corner so I thought it was a good chance to go on the outside.
“It was great to make two positions and get ahead of Lucas [di Grassi] and Sebastien [Buemi].
“The first stint was feeling good, I was feeling comfortable with the energy, but I was actually saving more energy than I think I needed to, and then when we arrived at the last few laps it was a bit surprise not to have enough energy really.”