Buemi frustrated after first-lap collision with Lotterer

Nissan Formula E Sebastien Buemi says his retirement in the Valencia E-Prix was “tough” to accept after he was taken out by Porsche rival Andre Lotterer on the opening lap.

Buemi frustrated after first-lap collision with Lotterer

Buemi has endured a tough start to the 2020/21 Formula E campaign with the Nissan team, which continues to race with its old powertrain having delayed the introduction of its new kit until next month’s Monaco E-Prix.

The 2015/16 champion scored only 11 points in the opening two double headers of the year, but qualified a season-best fourth for the first Valencia race after successfully progressing into the superpole section of qualifying.

However, his hopes of scoring Nissan’s first podium of 2021 were dashed when he was hit by Lotterer on the first lap of racing after the safety car, ending up beached in the gravel trap and having to retire immediately from the race.

Lotterer and Venturi’s Norman Nato were running side by side through the long Turn 8 left-hander when the Porsche driver outbraked himself going into the first part of the chicane, tagging the Nissan car of Buemi that had been running a few metres clear of the battling duo in fourth.

Lotterer was deemed responsible for the incident and promptly handed a drive-through penalty by the stewards which dropped him to the back of the pack.

Asked for his take on the incident that ended his race, Buemi said he was frustrated to lose out on a top result on a weekend he and Nissan have been competitive in an otherwise difficult start to the season.

“If I had managed a bit quicker the lap the corner before maybe I just would have missed it. Just a spot of the game,” he told Motorsport.com. “I just couldn’t do anything.

"All the hard work, to be spun around after only one lap, it’s tough. Andre has a lot of experience, it’s a shame this happened.

“I didn’t do an amazing job [this season], the car had some issues and the only times things were working well we basically got spun around. 

“Who knows what we could have done today. I think the car was good. The only time we are really good we get spun around. If you have people crashing into you, doing mistakes, then that’s it.”

This is the second time in two race weekends that Lotterer has been involved in a first-lap collision, having crashed into the leading Mercedes of Stoffel Vandoorne in the first Rome race earlier this month.

However, Lotterer felt there was little he could do to avoid hitting Buemi’s Nissan at this occasion, laying the blame on the "clumsy" circuit layout of the adapted Ricardo Tormo circuit.

“Honestly I don’t know what I could do differently,” Lotterer told Motorsport.com. “For me Sebastien was quite far away. I was battling with Norman and suddenly Sebastien is there, I think the layout of the track is a bit clumsy. 

“We saw a few collisions in that corner, unfortunately I couldn’t avoid it. So sorry for Seb and it was impossible to see him through Norman. I mean I was like say 'okay, I’m going to be there for the next corner.' Just bad timing.”

Read Also:

Lotterer was later involved in another collision with the second Venturi of Edoardo Mortara at Turn 1, a result of a brake problem that also forced Porsche teammate Pascal Wehrlein to retire the car in the pits.

Lotterer, who is yet to score a point five races into the 2021 season, will carry a three-place grid penalty into the second part of the Valencia double-header on Sunday.

“There the thing is actually I had a problem with brakes at the end,” the German driver told Motorsport.com. 

“I mean I still had brakes but I couldn’t stop the car as usual and couldn’t avoid the collision because I was actually. Mortara was on 235[kw attack mode] and he was actually ahead so I struggled to decelerate.”

Mortara had been running inside the points for much of the race before a mistake dropped him outside the top 10, with the collision with Lotterer while fighting for 15th position less than 10 minutes from the finishing leading to his retirement.

Summing up his race, Mortara told Motorsport.com: “Until that point, we made up a lot of   positions, we were starting P16 and I was already back to P7 or P8.

“At that moment I went off the track, start to fight again with a couple of cars. There was the incident with Andre that finished our race.”

shares
comments

Related video

Da Costa blasts FIA claims after controversial Valencia FE race
Previous article

Da Costa blasts FIA claims after controversial Valencia FE race

Next article

How Valencia E-Prix farce gave Formula E an image problem

How Valencia E-Prix farce gave Formula E an image problem
Mortara turns up the heat on FE title rivals in Marrakesh scorcher Prime

Mortara turns up the heat on FE title rivals in Marrakesh scorcher

Formula E’s unplanned return to Marrakesh provided teams with a fresh challenge in old but familiar surroundings, as Edoardo Mortara kept his cool in melting conditions to triumph and retake the championship lead

Formula E
Jul 4, 2022
How Formula E's double-duty drivers got on at Le Mans Prime

How Formula E's double-duty drivers got on at Le Mans

Eight Formula E drivers made the 7,000-mile sprint from the streets of Jakarta to the fabled Circuit de la Sarthe and every one had a story to share at this year's Le Mans 24 Hours. Despite a range of triumphs and disappointments, each driver doubling up on the day job played a key role in their teams' fortunes

Le Mans
Jun 14, 2022
How Evans kept cool in Jakarta heat to renew his Formula E title push Prime

How Evans kept cool in Jakarta heat to renew his Formula E title push

Jean-Eric Vergne had comfortably taken a landmark pole for Formula E's first visit to Indonesia and looked set to win his first race of a highly consistent campaign. But the DS Techeetah driver couldn't answer a late attack from Jaguar's Mitch Evans, who profited from the Frenchman's change in battery management tactics to seize a third win of the campaign

Formula E
Jun 6, 2022
Why de Vries' FP1 outing could add a new path to his current crossroads Prime

Why de Vries' FP1 outing could add a new path to his current crossroads

A Formula 2 and Formula E champion, Nyck de Vries is currently considering where his future in motorsport lies. Continuing in WEC and Formula E is possible and he's also courted glances Stateside after impressing in an IndyCar test. But ahead of his Formula 1 FP1 debut with Williams, he could have another option if he impresses...

Formula 1
May 18, 2022
How Jake Dennis’ struggles turned him into a Formula E frontrunner Prime

How Jake Dennis’ struggles turned him into a Formula E frontrunner

Having emerged as one of Formula E’s strongest drivers in his one-and-a-half seasons in the championship, Jake Dennis cemented his place in the series with a breakout maiden season. But it's not always been smooth sailing for the Briton

Formula E
May 10, 2022
How Vandoorne recaptured Mercedes' winning feeling in Monaco Prime

How Vandoorne recaptured Mercedes' winning feeling in Monaco

The Mercedes Formula 1 team is struggling, but its Formula E arm is in fine form at the moment and once again leads the drivers' standings courtesy of Stoffel Vandoorne. Here's how the Belgian took a well-judged Monaco victory to emerge at the head of the brewing four-way championship tussle

Formula E
May 2, 2022
Will lighter, greener, faster Gen3 deliver on Formula E's many promises? Prime

Will lighter, greener, faster Gen3 deliver on Formula E's many promises?

With a fighter-jet inspired design, revamped technical specifications and a new tyre supplier, Formula E's Gen3 car is set to shake up the series. But can it deliver on all of the promises that Formula E has set out to ensure that manufacturers consider the outlay on going racing in an all-electric arena worthwhile?

Formula E
Apr 29, 2022
Why Nissan's e.dams buyout signifies its Formula E victory intent Prime

Why Nissan's e.dams buyout signifies its Formula E victory intent

The e.dams Formula E squad is one of the most storied in the championship's short history as its original benchmark, but its successes in the Gen2 era have been fleeting by comparison. Nissan's decision to take full control ahead of Gen3 marks a statement of intent that it intends to get back to winning ways

Formula E
Apr 12, 2022