SANTIAGO (Reuters) – Britain’s Sam Bird won the third round of the Formula E season in Chile on Saturday to close in on the lead of the all-electric series.
Belgian Jerome d’Ambrosio, who finished eighth for Mahindra, remains the championship leader with 44 points to Virgin Racing driver Bird’s 43.
Bird took over at the front with 11 laps to go after Swiss rival Sebastien Buemi crashed out while leading from pole position on the fenced-off Santiago street circuit.
D’Ambrosio’s rookie team mate and fellow former F1 driver Pascal Wehrlein finished second, for his first Formula E podium, with Audi Sport’s Daniel Abt third on a sweltering day with track temperatures of 38 degrees Celsius.
Abt finished fourth on the track behind BMW’s Alexander Sims, who was then penalised for causing a collision.
France’s reigning champion Jean-Eric Vergne retired after a collision at the start.
The series, in its fifth season, has now had three different winners in three races.
(Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Peter Rutherford)