Da Costa forced to settle for second in Santiago

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Antonio Felix Da Costa secured his first podium finish as a DS Techeetah driver, after narrowly missing out on victory in Santiago. 

In only his third race for the Chinese team, Da Costa had his chance of winning the race snatched away by Max Gunther after an intense battle in the closing stages of the race

The battle went down to the last lap, which saw Gunther secure victory after Da Costa had to slow down to manage battery temperature, ultimately finishing the race in second.

The Portuguese driver was pleased to earn his first podium finish but knew he could have won the race. 

“It’s great to have a first podium and to fight for a win with my new team already when we are only three races in," said Da Costa. "We’ve still got some work to do because that should have been our win today but we’re still a new team and we’ve still got some things to get on top of.”

Although Da Costa had to slow down due to battery temperature, reflecting on the race he knew how important it was to finish and secure points.

"We made a mistake with the energy today and I thought we were good to go, so I overtook for the lead of the race but had to slow down pretty quickly after to manage the temperature.

"It is a bit of an awkward situation losing the win to BMW i Andretti Motorsport as my old team, but congratulations to Max. I am happy where I am, and we are only going to get better and improve as a team. 

"In the end, it’s better to finish second and get the points than not finishing the race at all.” 

Team Principal Mark Preston echoed the thoughts of Da Costa, explaining a win would have been special for the team but it was important to finish the race and secure points.

“We nearly had it all today, which would have been amazing to give DS on their 50th E-Prix but we’re very pleased with a second place.”

“If it’s one thing we know from the previous years is that it’s more beneficial to be safe and secure the points of a second-place than going for the win on a gamble,” said Preston.

 It was a frustrating race for team-mate Jean-Eric Vergne. The reigning champion had to retire from third position in the race after suffering damage to his car.

“I'm disappointed to not have won the race as I was in a position to do so. In the first three laps, it's always a bit of a bunch up of the cars and I damaged my front wing, and towards the end of the race, it eventually broke when I was running in 3rd so I had to retire the car. We had great pace and good energy, so I had a good shot at winning today,” said Vergne.