Sam Bird win in Brazil seals first-ever Formula E victory for NEOM McLaren

 The race, which witnessed 212 competitive overtakes, captivated tens of thousands of fans in Brazil's bustling city, including notable figures such as Bernie Ecclestone and local racing icons Felipe Massa and Emerson Fittipaldi.

Sam Bird took an early lead in Sao Paulo, strategically utilizing Attack Mode to maintain his lead against fierce competitors like Pascal Wehrlein, who initially led the pack. Throughout the race, the top 15 contenders were closely knit, with minimal time gaps intensifying the thrilling competition.

The lead swapped between Bird, Wehrlein, Antonio Felix da Costa in the Porsches, Evans in the Jaguar, and Jake Dennis representing Andretti Formula E, creating an electrifying back-and-forth battle. The strategic consensus before the race anticipated an energy-intensive challenge due to the long straights and sweeping curves of the Anhembi Sambadrome Circuit. Two safety car periods, including one to recover Nick Cassidy's Jaguar after a dramatic crash on Lap 16, transformed the race into a nail-biting sprint to the finish line.

In the final laps, Bird and Evans emerged as front-runners. Although Dennis in third had reserved energy, his overheating car hindered his chances. With just seven laps left, including additional ones due to safety car interventions, Evans seemed poised for victory after overtaking Bird at Turn 3 for P1.

Yet, Bird, driven by his desire for a win since 2021, launched a daring maneuver against Evans, his former Jaguar teammate. Bird executed a brilliant move around the outside of Turn 10, securing the inside line and ultimately clinching the lead at Turn 11, securing a thrilling victory with Evans closely trailing by just half a second. This epic battle and last-minute triumph marked one of Formula E's most memorable moments in its 10-season history.

Dennis, managing critical temperatures, had to prioritize finishing the race, allowing Oliver Rowland to capitalize and secure third place, overtaking both Wehrlein and Dennis at the final corner. Wehrlein secured fourth place ahead of Dennis, with da Costa rounding up the top six.

The race had significant implications for the standings, notably reducing Cassidy's lead due to his crash. Wehrlein is now just three points behind in second place, with Evans in third in the Drivers’ World Championship. In the Teams’ standings, Jaguar TCS Racing leads with 96 points to TAG Heuer Porsche's 61 points.

Reflecting on his victory, Bird remarked, “I think he’s struggling," indicating Evans' challenges. He praised the fair racing and expressed his satisfaction with the hard-earned win.

Evans, gracious in defeat, congratulated Bird and acknowledged his own power limitations, stating, "I just had no power, so he would have got me to the line anyway, I was a bit of a sitting duck."

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