Dom­i­nant Vergne wins fi­nal race to bag series

THE MO­TOR­SPORT LAP/ The For­mula E cham­pi­onship sea­son con­cluded in New York at the week­end

Business Day - Motor News - - MOTOR NEWS - Mo­tor News Reporter

The fi­nal race of the 2017-18 For­mula E cham­pi­onship took place in New York, US, at the week­end in which Jean-Eric Vergne (Techee­tah) clinched vic­tory ahead of the two Audi Sport ABT Sha­ef­fler en­tries of Lu­cas di Grassi and Daniel Abt.

Vergne has dom­i­nated the sea­son and man­aged to clinch the cham­pi­onship with 198 points, fol­lowed in sec­ond spot by Di Grassi with 144, while Sam Bird (DS Vir­gin Rac­ing) fin­ished a point adrift of Di Grassi with 143 points.

Di Grassi strug­gled at the start of the sea­son, not fin­ish­ing in the points for four races, but he made up for this by fin­ish­ing on the podium from the sixth race up to the fi­nale.

In the con­struc­tors’ cham­pi­onship, the Audi Sport ABT team clinched over­all vic­tory with 264 points fol­lowed by Techee­tah with 262 and DS Vir­gin a dis­tant third with 160.

The fifth sea­son of the cham­pi­onship will start in Saudi Ara­bia on De­cem­ber 15.

It was also the Ger­man leg of the Mo­toGP cham­pi­onship in which Marc Mar­quez (Rep­sol Honda) claimed over­all vic­tory in the Mo­toGP class, mark­ing his ninth con­sec­u­tive win at the Sach­sen­ring cir­cuit. He was fol­lowed to the flag by Mo­vis­tar Yamaha team­mates Valentino Rossi and Mav­er­ick Vi­nales.

In Moto2, South African rider Brad Bin­der (Red Bull KTM) fi­nally took vic­tory fol­lowed by Joan Mir (Marc VDS Kalex) and Luca Marini (Sky rac­ing Team VR46 Kalex).

The Moto3 class yielded a vic­tory for Jorge Martin (Del Conca Gresini Honda), fol­lowed by Marco Bezzechi (Re­dox Preustel GP KTM) and John McPhee (CIP-Green Power KTM). The next race will be the Czech Repub­lic Mo­toGP on Au­gust 5.


Lo­cally, the Ex­treme Fes­ti­val was held on the newly re­fur­bished tar­mac of Aldo Scrib­ante in Port El­iz­a­beth where the Sa­sol GTC class saw de­fend­ing cham­pion Michael Stephen (En­gen Audi) lead the open­ing race from start to fin­ish, fol­lowed by Si­mon Moss (En­gen Audi) and Jo­han Fourie (EPS Couri­ers BMW). The sec­ond heat went to Daniel Rowe in a works Volk­swa­gen Jetta, fol­lowed by Fourie and Moss.

In the GTC2 class, Devin Robert­son (Ferodo Mini JCW) clinched the first heat ahead of Bradley Lieben­berg (Cham­pion Mini JCW) and Charl Smal­berger (Sabertek Golf GTI). Heat two went to Lieben­berg.

Pos­si­bly the event’s biggest crowd draw­cards were two races of the G&H Trans­port Ex­treme Su­per­cars. The first was run in wet con­di­tions in which Charl Aran­g­ies lead with his Stradale Lam­borgh­ini Gal­lardo be­fore slid­ing off the cir­cuit twice, but he still man­aged to work his way back to sec­ond place, be­hind the Porsche 977T of vic­tor Franco Scrib­ante. Third spot went to Jonathan du Toit (TAR Fer­rari F430). Aran­g­ies won the sec­ond heat ahead of Du Toit and Dawie Olivier (G&H Trans­port BMW M3).

In the Volk­swa­gen Polo Cup Jef­frey Kruger (Uni­ver­sal Health Polo) drove to a bril­liant vic­tory in the first race, fol­lowed by Shaun La Re­servee (Alpine Mo­tors Polo) and Tas­min Pep­per (Elec­tric Life Polo).

In the sec­ond race both ti­tle con­tenders, Jonathan Mo­gotsi and Pep­per, were side­lined in a mul­ticar pile-up, which left La Re­servee to win ahead of Clin­ton Bezuiden­hout (Glyco En­gine Polo) and Kruger.

The next race is at Zwartkops Race­way on Au­gust 18.

In his­toric For­mula One news, fol­low­ing a 26-year hia­tus since its last grand prix the Mi­nardi M191B chas­sis num­ber 003, equipped with a Lam­borgh­ini LE3512 V12 en­gine and one of the pro­tag­o­nists of F1 in 1992, is back on the track.

The shake­down or­gan­ised by Lam­borgh­ini Squadra Corse fol­lows a restora­tion by Lam­borgh­ini Polo Storico.

Af­ter be­ing on dis­play at the Lam­borgh­ini Mu­seum in Sant’Agata Bolog­nese, the car un­der­went seven months’ work to re­turn to its orig­i­nal ef­fi­ciency. The car is now ready to com­pete in the cham­pi­onships ded­i­cated to his­toric F1 races.

The Audi Sport ABT team clinched the con­struc­tors’ cham­pi­onship in the For­mula E sea­son.

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