Jaguar Brazil Racing driver Sergio Jimenez took his second win of the 2018-19 Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy on the Brooklyn Street Circuit in New York City to secure the inaugural Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy championship crown with one race to spare.
This was after the Brazilian racer came into this weekend with a six point margin over Bryan Sellers, but after the American racer crashed his car in qualifying and his team were not able to get the car ready for the start of the race, all Jimenez had to do was control the race from the front and the title would be his.
He was helped even more by Sellers’s fellow Rahal Letterman Langian Racing team-mate Katherine Legge being given a three place grid penalty for an incident at the last race in Berlin. So she was ultimately forced to start from fifth on the grid for the all-important race in the big apple.
As the race got underway on the streets of New York City, it was a clean start throughout the field with Jimenez leading his Jaguar Brazil Racing team-mate Caca Bueno ahead of the Team Asia New Zealand car of Simon Evans in third position.
With the Pro drivers soon pulling away, Pro-Am champion elect Bandar Alesayi could concentrate on maintaining fifth place over his nearest title rival Yaqi Zhang after the Saudi Racing driver had a miserable time of things at the last race in Berlin. After blundering a chance at the title at the last event, he was desperate to secure the title he led since the very first race with a race to spare.
But while things soon settled down out front, Jaguar VIP driver Mark Hacking was soon engaged in a fierce battle with Viessmann Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy Team Germany driver Celia Martin who soon elevated herself ahead of the Canadian journalist up into eighth place.
But that was nothing for Hacking as shortly afterwards, things took a turn for the worse as he was nerfed into the wall on the exit of turn ten while fighting with China Racing driver Yiyi Zhang over ninth position. The consequence of this was that the race was brought to a standstill as the Safety Car was deployed to clear the array of debris that was scattered all over the road.
While it seemed like a rather mundane incident to clear, it wasn’t until the final lap that racing good back underway. Jimenez was able to judge the restart perfectly and caught his team-mate Bueno by surprise to take the win in New York City and with it the Pro title in the Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy. Bueno crossed the line second and in doing so has moved up to second in the championship with Evans completing the podium in third.
Meanwhile, Alesayi was able to hold off Zhang to win the Pro-Am class for the fifth time this season to secure the championship heading into the final race of the season.
So with both championships already decided heading into the final race of the inaugural Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy Championship, it will be gloves off toe-to-toe racing in the final encounter of the first season of a thoroughly enjoyable racing championship.