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DS Virgin chasing strong finish to second Formula E campaign

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LONDON – DS Virgin Racing drivers Sam Bird and Jean-Eric Vergne have set their sights on a strong finish to the second FIA Formula E season at this weekend’s final round in London.

Battersea Park will play host to Formula E for the final time with races on both Saturday and Sunday, with either Lucas di Grassi or Sebastien Buemi set to be crowned the series’ second champion.

DS Virgin heads to London third in the teams’ championship, just seven points ahead of Dragon Racing with 60 still up for grabs.

Bird won the second race in London last year, and will be racing with a special Union Jack livery on his car this weekend.

“I can’t wait to race again in London – partly because it’s sort of my home city, and because Formula E has created a spectacular track in a sublime setting,” Bird said.

“It holds very special memories given my success here last season. Winning the race was a brilliant way to end season 1 and I’ll be going all out to ensure the team and our fans have a similar reason to celebrate at the end this, our second season of Formula E.”

Teammate Jean-Eric Vergne has enjoyed an upturn in form in recent races, scoring his first podium of the season in Paris before picking up his maiden pole for DS Virgin last time out in Berlin.

“The last two races have been really good for me personally, so hopefully I can continue that momentum into London and have a strong end to the season,” Vergne said.

“I got a good podium here last season which gives me confidence going into the race. The technical team have done a great job to make the car really competitive so we want to give the home crowd something to cheer and really get them behind us throughout the weekend.”

Ahead of the race, DS Virgin completed a special night-time shoot in Brixton, London, giving a glimpse of the livery that Bird will race with.

Keating stripped of Le Mans GTE-Am win; No. 68 Ganassi entry also disqualified

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FIA stewards announced Monday that two Ford GT entries have been disqualified from this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans, including the GTE-Am class-winning No. 85 entry from privateer Keating Motorsports.

Also DQ’d was the factory No. 68 Chip Ganassi Racing entry of Joey Hand, Dirk Mueller and Sebastien Bourdais, which initially finished fourth in the GTE-Pro class.

Both entries were found in violation of fuel capacity regulations, with the No. 85 entry also failing to meet the minimum refueling time during pit stops.

The refueling system on the No. 85 entry, driven by Ben Keating, Jeroen Bleekemolen and Felipe Fraga, measured a time of 44.4 seconds during a stop, just shy of the minimum required time of 45 seconds.

As a result, the team was initially issued a 55.2-second post-race penalty by officials, which elevated the No. 56 Team Project 1 Porsche 911 RSR of Joerg Bergmeister, Patrick Lindsey, and Egidio Perfetti to the class win.

The time penalty was calculated by the difference in the refueling time (0.6 seconds) multiplied by the amount of pit stops made by the team (23), then multiplied by four.

The No. 85 entry was set to finish second in class, but then received an outright DQ after its fuel capacity was also revealed to be 0.1 liters above the maximum permitted capacity of 96 liters.

As for Ganassi’s No. 68 entry, it was found to have a fuel capacity of 97.83 liters, which is above the maximum allowed capacity of 97 liters for the GTE-Pro Fords.

The No. 67 Ford of Andy Priaulx, Harry Tincknell, and Jonathan Bomarito subsequently moves up to fourth, and the No. 69 Ford of Scott Dixon, Ryan Briscoe and Richard Westbrook moves up to fifth.

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