Just Electric

De Vries flies in Diriyah qualifying

Nyck de Vries became the first poleman of the season after a stellar performance in qualifying. The Dutchman will start from the front row alongside Pascal Wehrlein.

Group 1 had da Costa, Vandoorne, Vergne, Buemi, di Grassi, and Rowland putting all their efforts for a spot in Super Pole, though still early into the qualifying session. Rowland topped the group, followed suit by Vandoorne and di Grassi. Buemi and da Costa in P4 and P5 respectively, while Vergne finished on the bottom of the standings. 

Evans, Lotterer, Guenther, Bird, Frijns, and de Vries formed Group 2. Frijns was not able to set a time on his qualifying stint, whereas the rest of the drivers climbed up to the top of the standings, displacing the Group 1 drivers from their former positions. De Vries came up first, followed by Evans, Lotterer, Bird, and Guenther completing the Top 5. 

Group 3 had Turvey, Sims, Mortara, Lynn, Rast, and Wehrlein fighting to enter Super Pole. Mortara, Wehrlein, Rast, and Lynn moved up to the Top 5, but were not able to match de Vries’ times. On the other hand, Sims and Turvey could not set times quick enough to make it to the Top 10 places, finishing their qualifying stint in P11 and P12 respectively.

The last Group to go out on track before Super Pole, Group 4, was formed by Mueller, Blomqvist, Sette Camara, Dennis, Cassidy, and Nato. The first incident of the session came when Sette Camara went wide, hitting one of the barriers. Mueller and Cassidy finished in P5 and P6, respectively, entering Super Pole. Blomqvist came in P7, Nato in P15, and Dennis in P17.

De Vries, Mortara, Wehrlein, Rast, Mueller, and Cassidy would be contesting in Super Pole to become today’s poleman. The Envision Virgin Racing debutant impressed the public by climbing to the Top 6 on his first ever Formula E qulifying. 

However, shortly after the Super Pole drivers were about to go out on track, Race Control announced that Cassidy and Mueller would be out of contention for “improving under yellow flags”. Evans and Lynn would contest Super Pole instead, with the Jaguar Racing Kiwi being the first driver to do his stint. Evans set a time of 1:09.706. 

Up next came Mahindra Racing’s Lynn, who positioned himself ahead of Evans, setting a time of 1:09.345. Rast followed suit, climbing up to P1 in the standings with a lap time of 1:08.869. 

Wehrlein had a quicker time, moving up to the top of the standings. A 0.048 seconds gap put the Porsche driver ahead of the Audi racer. Mortara, who came next, could not match the top times, and finished in P3. 

De Vries, who had finished first on the first qualifying stint, flew in Super Pole, climbing on top of the standings and becoming today’s pole man. His lap time was of 1:08.157. 

The Dutchman started Season 7 with the right foot, with a stellar performance in qualifying. Next to him on the first row will be Wehrlein, while Rast and Mortara will start from the second row. Lynn and Evans complete the starting Top 6. 

Sette Camara, who had an incident on his qualifying stint, and Frijns, who could not come out on track to set times, will start from the back of the grid. 

A qualifying no short of drama is starting to build up the ambience to what promises to be an exciting first race of the season, as Formula E has us used to. 


Andrea Perilli

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