Cassidy measures Round 8 victory to perfection in Berlin

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Cassidy measures Round 8 victory to perfection in Berlin

Envision Racing's Nick Cassidy picked his moment to hit the front and went on to seal the race win in the SABIC Berlin E-Prix Round 8, as he got the best of a tight field to clamber from eighth to the top step of the podium.

Cassidy wins in Berlin (2)

The unique Berlin Tempelhof Circuit threw up a second intensely tactical race in as many days, brimming with overtakes - 172 in total, making for 362 over the weekend - and featuring another strategic masterclass from the race winner; this time, Envision Racing's Nick Cassidy. The Kiwi started eighth and hit the front on Lap 25. He drove supremely to stay there - setting the pace, given the okay from his engineer on Lap 33, and mastering Formula E's tightrope of ultimate pace, racecraft and energy.

READ MORE: The full Round 8 classification

Keeping a handle on energy was again crucial at the slipstream-heavy race track, and Cassidy himself doubted whether he'd be able to match the pace of those behind for the best part of 20 laps out-front. He fended off the close attentions of all comers, including each of his closest championship rivals at one stage or another.

Jake Dennis was in striking distance come the chequered flag in the Avalanche Andretti Porsche 99X Electric, just half a second back, in fact, but not close enough to topple Cassidy - who now has four podiums in five events and draws to within four points of standings leader Pascal Wehrlein (TAG Heuer Porsche). Brit Dennis will be pleased to end a three-race scoring drought, however, as he reignites his title ambitions.

cassidy story of the race

Wehrlein started sixth, in a stronger position than recent races having complained of poor one-lap pace in qualifying. He did lead a couple of times - the first on Lap 15 - but ultimately couldn't live with the leader and found himself shuffled to seventh at the race's end.

Jean-Eric Vergne admitted he didn't have the pace to challenge the Jaguar-powered Envision that ultimately raced to the top step, despite also hitting the front. Nevertheless, the DS PENSKE driver will no doubt be quielty pleased to have scored strongly with third, with an eye on the long game as the season passes its half-way stage.

Round 7 winner Mitch Evans made up a spot from his grid position to come home fourth, making it a superb weekend's work for the Kiwi and Jaguar TCS Racing, despite teammate Sam Bird getting into contact and being forced out of contention in this encounter. In fact, a Jaguar powertrain had driven to victory in three consecutive races for the very first time in Formula E, albeit in the hands of customers Envision Racing and Cassidy.

The standout drive was arguably Maximilian Guenther's from 21st on the grid. The Maserati MSG Racing driver followed up on securing the team's first podium in Round 7 with sixth a day later - climbing 15 positions through the pack.

Polesitter Robin Frijns in the ABT CUPRA couldn't live with the pace of the leaders and dropped to 17th at thr end, with teammate and fellow front-row starter Nico Mueller faring better with ninth on home soil to score the team's first points in the GEN3 era.

That left Wehrlein on top of the pile but by a narrow four-point margin to Cassidy, with Vergne third. TAG Heuer Porsche's advantage in the Teams' table also continues to evaporate, with the Jaguar-powered Envision Racing squad now just 15 points back in second.

Next up, in a fortnight's time, we head to Monaco for Round 9 of Season 9, 6 May.

Race start

As it happened...

Frijns flew from pole with teammate Mueller matching him up - ABT CUPRA holding firm. Four title contenders came side-by-side, elbows out, in the battle for third spot with Buemi, Vergne, Evans and table topper Wehrlein scrapping for the advantage. 

As in race one, early ATTACK MODE activations were the order of the day on Lap 3, as drivers looked to drop back into the pack and take advantage of the slipstream effect in conserving usable energy. Being in the lead at the right time, when it matters at the end, is the key.

The ABTs were first to jump with Frijns dropping to second and Mueller fifth. Buemi and Vergne followed, and when the initial round of ATTACK MODE played out, Frijns held the advantage, while Vergne had pipped Mueller for a net third - only temporarily though. Once Evans had jumped through the loop, Mueller was able to slice by Vergne into Turn 1 to briefly hit the front for the first time in Formula E before drivers started to take their second ATTACK MODE boosts.

Come Lap 11, polesitter Frijns had slipped to 11th spot, while Mueller was still in and around the race lead. Once the order started to shake out, he had both TAG Heuer Porsches - Wehrlein and da Costa - for company; the pair having started sixth and 10th respectively. ABT CUPRA's German driver managed to keep a hold of top spot while, on Lap 14, Sebastien Buemi made up two positions from sixth and teammate Cassidy did likewise.

From there, as in Round 7, there was scarcely a corner where several overtaking manoeuvres weren't being made with the top 15 split by four seconds and every team and driver looking to strike the balance between track position, pace and efficient driving - mixing it in the pack. In fact, the lead changed six times over the opening 12 laps.

On Lap 15, the Porsches did hit the front - Wehrlein from da Costa - before the latter took his second ATTACK MODE boost. One minute this time for the Portuguese, with the Envision Racing pair of Cassidy and Buemi splitting da Costa in fourth and Wehrlein in P1.

With the picture becoming clearer and the lead pack having used both of their mandatory 50kW ATTACK MODE activations, the Porsches held the advantage on Lap 19 with Vergne, Cassidy, Dennis - after a smart leap up the inside of Buemi at the hairpin - Buemi, Evans, Mueller, di Grassi and Vandoorne rounded out the top 10.

Wehrlein into the lead

Progress didn't stop there for Dennis, with the second Envision of Cassidy his next victim at the Airplane turn on Lap 20. Vergne, meanwhile, made a move for P1 at Turn 1 on the Porsche pair. It lasted no more than a lap though, as they traded places once again with the DS PENSKE shuffled to third and Wehrlein leading da Costa out front. Unfortunately for Buemi, he tagged a car in that tight top 10 scrap - dropping from sixth to the back as his front wing got caught beneath his front wheels, forcing him into pitting.

With just four seconds between the top 15 runners, positions were changing left and right and lap by lap. On Lap 25, Cassidy headed the way having picked his moment to push to the front - the Porsches perhaps keen to play the long game as they dropped to fifth and sixth respectively. 

Under the radar, Maximilian Guenther (Maserati MSG Racing) had made ludicrous progress - up from 21st on the grid to seventh on Lap 26, all while staying within a percent of usable energy of the front runners. Everyone from seventh and up had a real chance of mixing it for the race win on both pace and in their remaining energy.

Come Lap 28, Evans played the long game to make it by Wehrlein for fifth at Turn 4 - hanging on all the way around the outside of Turns 2 & 3. Cassidy radioed in to his engineer to say leading was "killing him" in terms of energy, but Dennis and da Costa were content to bide their time in the slipstream just behind. Evans' progress continued on Lap 29 - now fourth after dispatching Vergne. The Envision Racing driver was, however, managing things well - right with those just behind him; the I-TYPE 6 again proving quick and efficient.

replay of da costa incident

As quickly as Evans made ground, he lost it. On Lap 31, Vergne squeezed back past his man as well as third-placed da Costa as he set about charging after the lead pair of Cassidy and Dennis - the DS PENSKE man picking his moment. Da Costa and Evans came to blows on Lap 35 at the hairpin, squeezing things up behind after the Jaguar driver had passed the Porsche for fourth - the Portuguese trying his hardest to take back the spot but indirectly causing teammate Wehrlein to be shuffled back to seventh spot.

On Lap 36, Cassidy led Dennis, Vergne, Evans, da Costa, Guenther, Wehrlein, Vandoorne, Mueller and Ticktum completed the top 10 with absolutely nothing splitting the top six in terms of time, pace or energy. The last four laps would be a monumental sprint to the finish in the fight for silverware.


It was risk versus reward into the final lap as the lead quartet scrapped flat out. Vergne in third and Evans in fourth slid wide and overcooked it at Turn 1, meaning it was Dennis on Cassidy for the win. The Envision Racing man had the advantage and made it count as he was able to hold fast for his second Formula E victory - some achievement given the length of time he was in the race lead.

Dennis followed him home less than half a second back, with Vergne completing the podium. Standings leader Wehrlein did end up seventh, as he was on Lap 35, while yesterday's race winner Evans rounded fourth for another strong points haul.