Grosjean not expecting to challenge for points at Spa

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Lotus driver Romain Grosjean does not believe that he will be fighting for points in the Belgian Grand Prix this weekend, but felt that his practice runs went better than he was expecting on Friday at Spa.

The French driver finished 13th in the first free practice session and 14th in FP2, but conceded in a media session on Friday evening that the lack of power in the Renault engine is proving particularly costly at Spa.

“It was not as bad as I was expecting in FP1,” Grosjean said. “We had a small technical issue on the rear of the car early on in the run, so hopefully that will explain the loss of performance. We knew it would be a track where we suffer.”

When asked to predict how he would fare during qualifying and the race, the Lotus driver said that under normal conditions he expects to be scrapping outside of the points.

“At the moment, I wouldn’t say that the top ten is possible,” he admitted. “Probably inbetween 12th and 15th, 16th.

“But again, the weather may change and that always helps you a little bit when you’re struggling.”

Grosjean’s teammate, Pastor Maldonado, also endured a difficult practice on Friday, culminating in a huge crash at the beginning of FP2. However, he was more optimistic than Grosjean when it came to gauging Lotus’ chances of points.

“The car looks, to be honest, not too bad,” he said. “Let’s do our best tomorrow. I think still we have a good chance to be close to the top ten, and then in the race, everything can happen.”

Formula E: Vergne outlasts di Grassi for Punta del Este victory

Photo: Getty Images
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Saturday’s Punta del Este ePrix did not disappoint, with Techeetah’s Jean-Eric Vergne and Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler’s Lucas di Grassi engaging in a thrilling battle throughout the entire race.

Vergne led the way from the pole, having been promoted up the grid after original pole sitter di Grassi was ruled to have cut a chicane during his pole lap, but di Grassi was right on the back wing of Vergne the entire way and made several attempts to get by.

The intense battle between the two, which saw them nearly lock Vergne’s rear wing with di Grassi’s front nose, stayed remarkably clean for the most part, and Vergne was able to hold off all of di Grassi’s advances, a few of which can be viewed below, to take the win.

DS Virgin Racing’s Sam Bird was also on the charge, the British driver coming from ninth on the grid to take third.

Full race results can be viewed here. The victory sees Vergne extend his points lead over Mahindra Racing’s Felix Rosenqvist, who finished fifth, to 30 points, with Vergne on 109 markers and Rosenqvist on 79.

Bird sits third with 76 points, respectively.