Di Grassi Wins Inaugural Formula E Race (Crash Videos + Complete Race Video)


The first-ever Formula E race is now behind us and it sure had its share of exciting moments, including a crash.

Video of the entire race below:

Here’s a look at the finishing results for the Beijing Formula E race:

01 Lucas di Grassi Audi Sport ABT 52:23.413
02 Franck Montagny Andretti Autosport +2.867
03 Sam Bird Virgin Racing +6.559
04 Charles Pic Andretti Autosport +19.301
05 Karun Chandhok Mahindra Racing +23.952
06 Jerome d’Ambrosio Dragon Racing +31.664
07 Oriol Servia Dragon Racing +41.968
08 Nelson Piquet jr. China Racing +43.896
09 Stéphane Sarrazin VENTURI +43.975
10 Daniel Abt Audi Sport ABT +1:02.507
11 Jaime Alguersuari Virgin Racing +2:00.613
12 Nicolas Prost Team e.dams Renault +1 lap
13 Nick Heidfeld VENTURI +1 lap
14 Michela Cerruti Trulli +1 lap
15 Katherine Legge Amlin Aguri +1 lap
16 Ho Pin Tung China Racing +2 laps

Not Classified
Takuma Sato Amlin Aguri +4 laps
Sebastien Buemi Team e.dams Renault +11 laps
Jarno Trulli Trulli +23 laps
Bruno Senna Mahindra Racing +25 laps

Planet F1 details the dramatic ending of the race as follows:

Di Grassi started the race second on the grid in his electric-powered Spark-Renault SRT_01E.

Down to third place as the race entered its final lap, the Brazilian jumped into the lead when Nicolas Prost and Nick Heidfeld clashed at the very last corner.

Heidfeld had closed in on Prost with four laps to go and on the final lap made his move for the victory.

Closing on the pole-sitter down the straight and into the final corner, Heidfeld drew alongside the Frenchman only for Prost to turn in on him.

The impact sent Heidfeld’s car into a kerb that launched him into the air. The Venturi driver hit the wall, the fence and rolled before landing upside down. Thankfully he was not hurt.

Heidfeld Tweets Of Incident On Track

Heidfeld Tweets Of Incident On Track

That crash allowed di Grassi to jump into the lead and to capture victory at the first-ever Formula E race.

Heidfeld was not pleased with the move made by Nicolas Prost:

“I placed it perfectly for the last corner and I guess the TV pictures show quite clearly I was alongside, Nico pulled alongside me.”

“We spoke after the incident and he obviously has a different opinion than I do. Maybe he [will] change his mind when he watches the tape. I’m sure it is possible to overtake there. It is disappointing, but I’m not mad at him. This is racing.”

Two videos of the crash below:

The Formula E racing series now takes a two-month break, returning on November 22 in Malaysia for the Putrajaya ePrix.

Categories: Racing


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28 Comments on "Di Grassi Wins Inaugural Formula E Race (Crash Videos + Complete Race Video)"

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By God! I knew there was a risk of crashes with no sand pits or anything, but on the first race? And it was rather heart stopping too.

It was quite arresting watching it live. Being French I wanted Prost and more importantly Renault to win the first ever Fe race, but alas it was not to be.

I think Prost let the pressure of being immortalized in the history books get to him and literally took out Heidfeld.

As a side note those sausage curbs are notorious for sending cars airbourne. Fe should reconsider their use.

I’ve seen the whole race and hell did that make time fly! The first accident at the beginning took me by surprise, very unfortunate considering that driver ran with more than enough problems before. Not to mention when Montagny nearly ran Pic out of the race! I was rather disappointed by Cerruti and Legge rounding up the bottom, I was really rooting for them.

Also, that finish. Damn! You can hear everyone getting ready and then that happens. There’s really no room for error on a city track. By the looks of it Prost only looked right and clipped Heidfeld when positioning his last corner. In the usaully hostile comments, everyone seems to be ranting that it was typically “Prost” of him. “Like father like son”.

I don’t want to offend, I haven’t the slightest clue and certinally have no understanding of that reference.

Yeah, it flew for me too, but for a different reason.
I watched up to about lap 3 and then woke up for the last quarter of lap 25…
Prost should get at least a one race ban for that move!

Haha… I know that is common for the F1 races with their soothing sounds with people watching the start and sleeping until the end of the race.

I did not think the Formula E would have the same effect. 🙂

Thx for posting this insideev’s. I’ll enjoy the full coverage.

Indeed. Thank you insideevs.com!

wow. Looks like Prost did it on purpose.

I don’t think so. Sure he doesn’t come over very professionally in that situation, but he didn’t do it on purpose. If you watch the video he is looking to the right several times expecting an attack at the inside line.
In the moment as it comes into his mind that he eventually has to block the left side, Heidfeld is already in the dead angle of the mirror and he doesn’t see him and they crash.
That’s my interpretation. Maybe Prost underestimated the extra speed Heidfeld gained from saving energy all the race and using it strategically in that decisive moment. He would have won for sure.

The upcoming turn was to the left. You can hear the announcer say “Hiedfeld goes for the inside line”. So Prost looked right to the outside.

but anyway. I think you are correct and Prost didn’t do it on purpose but was definitely at fault as Hiedfeld definitely had established an overlap.

Prost DID do it on purpose!
The alternative is that it was an involuntary nervous tick that steered the car to the left or there was a fault in the car.
Prost steered into Heidfeld on purpose probably hoping Heidfeld would back out.
I’m sure he didn’t hope for the actual result of his actions, but it was a deliberate decision on Prost’s part!

Look ma no battery fire!!

Ah, now that was something!

What did Heidfeld launch off….ie what caused his car to go airborn?

So called “sausage curbs”. Initially introduced to avoid drivers leaving the track. But it’s now already the second time within one months that they cause a terrifying accident (GP2 race in Spa, Belgium).

Tks for the post Eric, enjoyed it a lot.
Hoping Montreal gets on the bandwagon to get one of these races eventually.

Thank you for posting the link so quickly. It was nice to wake up and watch this. One request, please don’t spoil the race in the headline!

Prost has now seen the video:

‘I feel very bad about the incident and after looking at the videos I understand that I am responsible. I just did not see him, feel very bad’


“I did not see him?”
Two cars race towards a left hand turn. The lead car is taking a middle of the track line. He looks in his right hand mirror and sees no car there.
That leaves right behind you or pulling to the left hand side to try to out brake you, take the turn first and then run wide to reduce the gap on the right to dissuade you to not try to retake the position. This is Race Craft 101! Even a rookie in his first season of racing would have a 50/50 chance of working out where the other car would most likely be, let alone a racer of Prost’s calibre!
Nick was FULLY ALONGSIDE of him when he turned in.
He turned in on Heidfeld ON PURPOSE!

I hope that they are doing testing with various battery chemistries in order to search batteries that have highest energy density, highest power density and highest charging rate.

They should specify clearly maximum weight of the battery and ask car and cell manufacturers to provide prototypes. E.g. Tesla batteries have higher energy density than what is used today in Formula E. They could ask if Tesla is interested to provide battery packs for Formula E cars. I guess that the problem here is that Tesla is not interested to become a sponsor, so it may be that Formula E is therefore not interested on Tesla’s services, because money talks here.

Formula E cars are still very slow compared to Formula 1 cars, but the gap can be narrowed.

It would be perhaps optimal that there is two cars. But two or three pit stops. And another car is charged while second car is racing. As it takes 20 to 30 minutes for full charge, it there might not be enough time for full charge so it may be needed to conserve energy.

Viewing Parties for Formula E

I’d like to plan some, perhaps through the EAA local chapters. Any ideas?

I’m glad the full video was posted here. My DVR cut off shortly after the crash. InsideEVs was my first stop for news, so I was happy to see the rest of the
video too!

Set your recording device to record at least 30 minutes after the event finishes.
Mine started ten minutes before and ran for twenty minutes after, and it still cut out with Jenny Gow prattling on about the crash…
I can’t help thinking those waiting for the following program on ITV4 were a bit annoyed!

If anyone is interested, fox will be replaying it Sunday at 1pm EST.

Regardless, the spectacularity of that crash is just more media coverage for F-e. We just need to make it to season 2 with good viewership and that when we will really see some radical innovations, because next year constructors will get to build their own cars, not these spec ones.

InsideEVs – please avoid announcing the winner in the post title! Some of us like to watch these things without knowing the final outcome!

Thanks to InsideEVs for posting the video!

While that crash is a bummer for those involved, I don’t think this could have been much better from a publicity standpoint!
Quite a good race indeed with lots of overtaking.