Just Electric

Vandoorne masters the conditions for pole in Hong Kong

Stoffel Vandoorne secured his and HWA’s first pole position in Formula E despite the rain in Hong Kong by going three tenths faster than Oliver Rowland.

The Belgian driver set a 1:11.580 to go 3 tenths of a second faster than Rowland for Nissan e.dams.

The Super Pole session was delayed to allow the series to assess the track conditions after a downpour between the end of the fourth group and the start of Super Pole.

Edoardo Mortara set the third fastest lap despite a series of lurid slides but will be taking a three-place grid drop after speeding during the red flag at the end of the second qualifying group meaning he will be starting from sixth.

The red flag was caused by DS Techeetah’s Jean-Eric Vergne who, in a repeat of qualifying in Hong Kong from Season 4, spun as he exited the final corner. On this occasion, he damaged the car and also had his fastest time deleted for causing a red flag. 

It means the reigning champion will start from 18th.

Andre Lotterer set the fourth fastest lap for DS Techeetah with Gary Paffett fifth fastest in the other HWA entry despite locking up on the way into turn one.

Lucas di Grassi rounded out the top six for Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler despite locking up on the way into Turn 2.

Sam Bird was seventh fastest for Envison Virgin ahead of Sebastien Buemi in the second of the Nissan’s, the Venturi of Felipe Massa and Bird’s teammate, Robin Frjns rounded out the top ten.

Tom Dillmann was 11th for NIO ahead of Daniel Abt in twelfth for Audi and Alex Sims in the first of the BMW i Andretti Motorsport entries.

Jose Maria Lopez set the 14th quickest time for Dragon with Jaguar’s Nelson Piquet 15th fastest and Felipe Nasr 16th fastest in the other Dragon entry.

Mitch Evans was 17th despite being stuck in traffic on his 250kw lap ahead of Vergne.

Oliver Turvey set the 19th quickest time in the second of the NIOs ahead of the BMW of Antonio Felix da Costa rounded out the top 20.

The Mahindra pairing of Pascal Wehrlein and Jerome d’Ambrosio will round out the field after they went out early on in the first group when the conditions were arguably at their worst.

Rob Lomas

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