Just Electric

Bird fastest in Paris FP1

Sam Bird topped a red flag disrupted free practice one ahead of the Paris ePrix.

The DS Virgin driver set a 1m01.698s time on his final lap of the session to put him just 0.018s faster than Lucas di Grassi, who had led for most of FP1.

Red flags were brought out twice in the 45 minute session as drivers pushed to find the limits on a cold Parisian track.

Nelson Piquet was the first man in the wall after losing control of his Jaguar at the final corner early in the session. Piquet, who was P2 at the time, slid into the wall, causing lots of damage to the front left of his car. He was able to get back out in his second car later in the session, but could only manage 12th fastest as others found improvements.

When green flags returned to the track, di Grassi and Jean-Eric Vergne jumped to the top of the times. Sebastien Buemi and the Virgins of Bird and Alex Lynn were quick to follow, knocking Vergne down to fifth, but none could challenge di Grassi at the top of the order before the red flags halted action again.

This time it was the Mahindra of Felix Rosenqvist in the wall. The Swedish driver lost control of the back end of his car and appeared to over correct himself, sending him head first into the barrier. There didn’t seem to be too much damage, but he was unable to return to the pits.

Buemi also hit the wall after a lock up but was able to get his Renault e.dams to the pits without help.

Di Grassi was top of the order in the closing stages of the session, with Bird a few tenths of a second behind and Vergne in P3. Bird managed two fastest sectors as he tried to better di Grassi’s time, but a small mistake kept him behind the reigning champion. It wasn’t until his final lap of the session that he was able to go faster than di Grassi’s 1m01.716s, knocking the Audi driver to P2.

Daniel Abt and Mitch Evans also found improvements, finishing third and fourth ahead of Vergne.

Lynn ended the session sixth fastest ahead of Jose Maria Lopez and Antonio Felix da Costa.

Jerome d’Ambrosio and Andre Lotterer completed the top 10 while early pace setter Oliver Turvey could only manage 11th quickest.

2LucasDI GRASSI280.018
7José MariaLOPEZ210.526
8Antonio FelixDA COSTA230.540
20Qing HuaMA252.143

Bethonie Waring

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