Alexander Sims in the BMW i Andretti #27 BMW iFE.18 finished third on the circuit in the ABB Formula E race in Santiago, Chile on January 26, but a post-race penalty for a contact incident on the circuit dropped him to seventh in the final standings. His teammate António Félix da Costa retired from the race with a punctured tire that resulted from a contact incident.
Sims qualified eighth while Félix da Costa qualified seventeenth in slippery track conditions.
Sims worked his way through the pack until he got into a battle for third with Venturi’s Edoardo Mortara. Mortara spun during the battle for position; Sims moved into third and went on to finish there. But after the race Sims was penalized for contact with Mortara. The win went to Envision Virgin Racing’s Sam Bird. The race was run in 100-degree heat, the highest in the history of the series.
After the race Sims said, “Firstly, thank you very much to the team, who did an outstanding job of helping me to manage the car during this very tough race. I think everything went superbly. Unfortunately, I then had the incident with Edoardo Mortara. To be perfectly honest, I did not feel any contact, but I trust the investigation of the race stewards and accept the penalty. Despite that, I will take a lot of positives from Santiago and am now focusing on the next race.”
BMW i Andretti team principal Roger Griffiths said, “The track here in Santiago created some exciting racing; it was just disappointing we couldn’t finish on the podium. We knew that the key aspect was going to be getting a grip on the temperatures during all sessions. To be honest, it was a disappointing qualifying result with Alexander in eighth and António in eighteenth but the race is what counts and we got off to a good start. António unfortunately had contact with another car, resulting in a punctured tire and a damaged car. Alexander was making really good progress through the field, and when the checkered flag dropped we crossed the line in third place. It was a great result for Alexander and the team was back up on the podium, but post-race penalties dropped Sims back down to seventh place. We as a team respect the decision of the stewards. We will move on to the race in Mexico City.”
Going into the Mexico City race on February 16 Félix da Costa is third in drivers’ points and Sims is tenth. BMW i Andretti is fourth in team points.—Brian Morgan
[Photos courtesy BMW AG.]