FE: Sims takes pole position for Diriyah E-Prix
Alex Sims has taken pole position for the opening Formula E race of the season in Diriyah, ahead of the Mercedes-Benz EQ of Stoffel Vandoorne.
Sims put in a great lap-time on his flying lap to end up nearly three tenths faster than Vandoorne, while Nyck De Vries, who is making his debut in the series, was an impressive third, just 0.09s slower than Vandoorne.
Edoardo Mortara was two tenths further back in fourth, while Sam Bird threw away a shot at pole position in the opening stages of his flying lap.
Bird had been fastest after the four qualifying groups set their times, but went wide in the first sector, having to back out of the throttle to avoid hitting the wall, and he could only go fast enough for fifth.
Jarome D’Ambrosio was the fastest of the Mahindra Racing cars ending up sixth, nearly a second down on Sims, although he was the first driver to set a lap in Superpole.
The five drivers in the first qualifying session found themselves at a disadvantage, cleaning a dusty track for the following groups, and it showed, with none of the drivers from the group making it through to Superpole.
It meant that reigning champion, Jean Eric Vergne found himself down in 11th, while Sebastien Buemi ended up 14th fastest.
Brendon Hartley has had a nightmare of a debut so far, unable to set many laps in practice, and then could only manage 18th in qualifying.
DS Techeetah driver, Antonio Da Costa, also had a session to forget, after going on his flying lap a lap earlier than the other drivers in the first group, and found himself along way behind, and ended up 21st.
Nico Mueller and James Calado both crashed within seconds of each other at the same corner, both locking up in Q4, and they failed to set any representative lap-times ended up last of the classified finishers in 23rd and 24th.
|1||A. SIMS||BMW I ANDRETTI||1:14.563|
|3||N. DE VRIES||MERCEDES-BE||0.366|
|4||E. MORTARA||ROKIT VENTURI||0.568|
|5||S. BIRD||ENVISION VIRGIN RACING||0.787|
|6||J. D’AMBROSIO||MAHINDRA RACING||0.976|
|7||A. LOTTERER||TAG HEUER PORSCHE FORMULA E TEAM||1:15.518|
|8||O. ROWLAND||NISSAN E.DAMS||0.135|
|9||M. GÜNTHER||BMW I ANDRETTI MOTORSPORT||0.162|
|10||O. TURVEY||NIO 333 FE TEAM||0.5|
|11||J. VERGNE||DS TECHEETAH||0.611|
|12||R. FRIJNS||ENVISION VIRGIN RACING||0.682|
|13||P. WEHRLEIN||MAHINDRA RACING||0.682|
|14||S. BUEMI||NISSAN E.DAMS||0.725|
|15||D. ABT||AUDI SPORT ABT SCHAEFFLER FORMULA E TEAM||0.746|
|16||M. EVANS||PANASONIC JAGUAR RACING||1.014|
|17||F. MASSA||ROKIT VENTURI RACING||1.065|
|18||B. HARTLEY||GEOX DRAGON||1.556|
|19||L. DI GRASSI||AUDI SPORT ABT SCHAEFFLER FORMULA E TEAM||1.695|
|20||N. JANI||TAG HEUER PORSCHE FORMULA E TEAM||2.227|
|21||A. DA COSTA||DS TECHEETAH||3.095|
|22||MA QING HUA||NIO 333 FE TEAM||6.183|
|23||N. MÜLLER||GEOX DRAGON||7.499|
|24||J. CALADO||PANASONIC JA||8.274|