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Sam Bird seals impressive NY double
17 July 2017, 01:45 | Ross Houston
The Mahindra Racing team celebrates their double podium finish at the second race of the NYC ePrix
Race 1 victor Sam Bird will start today's second Qualcomm New York City ePrix from pole position after defeating Felix Rosenqvist by just 0.037s in a thrilling qualifying session.
Mahindra Racing had a hard start to the New York City ePrix, with Nick Heidfeld not finishing the first race, and Felix Rosenqvist only managing a 15th place finish.
He stayed glued to the Swede's rear bumper, and after a brief full-course yellow interlude thanks to Mitch Evans stopping his Jaguar while running 10th, resumed his attack immediately.
On Saturday, Bird became the first driver to ever win an worldwide motor race within the five boroughs, battling his way past rookie teammate Alex Lynn and holding off fan favorite Jean-Eric Vergne of Techeetah. Yesterday's runner-up Jean-Eric Vergne will start third for Techeetah as he aims to take his first Formula E win.
Felix Rosenqvist led the race until eventual winner Sam Bird would get past him after the 10th lap
Rosenqvist's teammate Nick Heidfeld tried to make a move but failed to do so.
Lucas di Grassi's fourth-place finish enabled the Brazilian to cut into the absent Sebastien Buemi's championship lead which he reduced to just 20 points before Sunday's second round of the NY ePrix.
Red Bull Formula 1 protege Pierre Gasly caught the pair at the end, and the three concertinaed through the final corner - with Gasly throwing his Renault e.dams around the outside of Heidfeld. But still, he managed to finish fourth.
Thrilled with the race win, Bird said, "What a weekend not only for myself but for the team!" Title contender Lucas di Grassi was eighth. "What a vehicle I was given this weekend - it was flying in qualifying, sensational energy management in the race - so hats off to DS Virgin Racing for giving me the best auto they have ever given me".
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