Buemi wins Hong Kong FE opener
Sebastien Buemi kicked off his Formula E title defence with victory in a frenetic 2016/17 season opener in Hong Kong.
Nelson Piquet Jr turned his surprise pole into an early advantage, building a four-second lead as Sam Bird and Buemi passed Oliver Turvey for second and third.
The race changed on lap 17, when Jose Maria Lopez crashed into the barriers off the Turn 3/4 chicane.
Piquet was just behind on the road and nosed his car into the barriers in avoidance. He was able to rejoin but fell to third as Lopez’s submerged car prompted a safety car.
Buemi was one of several to stop and give himself more laps to complete in his second car than those who stayed out, but gained track position and a time advantage when the rest pitted.
He rejoined behind Lucas di Grassi but quickly passed the Brazilian, who was on an even more aggressive energy-saving strategy having pitted as the safety car was deployed after breaking his front wing.
After leaders Piquet and Bird pitted, Buemi inherited the lead and managed to eke his remaining energy out to win, with di Grassi a remarkable second and Nick Heidfeld third.
Jaguar underwhelmed on its return to racing, with Adam Carroll finishing 12th and Mitch Evans retiring.