Nick Cassidy, Envision Virgin, finally put it all together and took pole position for the second Rome E-Prix today. 

He is ahead of Norman Nato, another rookie, who topped the Group Qualifying stages. It was a drying qualifying that favoured those who came later but it was still an exhibition in pace that earned pole for Cassidy.

The session had started in much wetter conditions with lap times showing this at about 20 seconds slower than the dry times yesterday.

The sheer car control in Group 1 was mad with twitches all over the place. Sam Bird referred to a crisis at T6 but he was fastest of the first session with a 5 second field spread. Super Pole after G1: Bird, Evans, De Vries, Frijns, Rast, Vergne.

It looked like the conditions were a touch better in some parts of the track for Group 2 but they were still skating and struggling for grip. In what should be a flat out straight, cars were getting wheelspin and twitching. It was so difficult for the drivers to be in control.

Every driver was nearly in the wall at every corner. But the track was faster with four cars from Group 2 surpassing the Group 1 runners.

Super Pole after G2: Wehrlein, Mortara, Rowland, Buemi, Bird, Evans.

The Group 3 runners had a similar challenge to Group 2 and the field spread was massive. Vandoorne, and Müller made it into the top 6 but they were put to shade by Alexander Sims going fastest in the Mahindra.

He was 2.4s faster than his teammate on the same track in the same group.

Super Pole after G3: Sims, Wehrlein, Vandoorne, Mortara, Rowland, Müller.

It had stopped raining by Group 4 and whether that would majorly help the track conditions was unknown because of the way the water just sits on top of the road surface.

But then the lap times started and Andre Lotterer was 2.2 seconds ahead of Sims. The Group 4 advantage was real.

The only drivers not through to Super Pole from Group 4 were Tom Blomqvist and Jake Dennis. Dennis at least didn’t make it to the track but if he had done he would have had his best qualifying in FE to date.

Lotterer was fast enough but a power over-usage penalty meant his lap was deleted so he was chucked out of Super Pole.

Super Pole after G4: Nato, Cassidy, Günther, Sims, Wehrlein, Vandoorne.

The track was so much better for Super Pole but whether it would get better and better throughout the session was an unknown.

Vandoorne went out first, then was surpassed by Pascal Wehrlein by 1.7 seconds. But then Sims was a second back from Vandoorne. The track was still difficult.

The lap was there for the taking but it needed to be perfect from man and machine.

And the final two drivers were able to do that. Nick Cassidy took pole ahead of Norman Nato for an all rookie front row.

The race is in three hours. So mixed up and different to yesterday. Let’s go.

Position Driver Team
1 Nick Cassidy Envision Virgin
2 Norman Nato Venturi
3 Pascal Wehrlein Porsche
4 Stoffel Vandoorne Mercedes
5 Max Günther BMW
6 Alex Sims Mahindra
7 Edo Mortara Venturi
8 Oliver Rowland Nissan
9 Nico Müller Dragon Penske
10 Sebastien Buemi Nissan
11 Sam Bird Jaguar
12 Mitch Evans Jaguar
13 Lucas Di Grassi Audi
14 Tom Blomqvist NIO333
15 Antonio Felix Da Costa DS Techeetah
16 Alex Lynn Mahindra
17 Oliver Turvey NIO333
18 Nyck De Vries Mercedes
19 Robin Frijns Envision Virgin
20 René Rast Audi
21 Jean-Eric Vergne DS Techeetah
NC Sergio Sette Camara Dragon Penske
NC Jake Dennis BMW
NC Andre Lotterer Porsche

Leave a Reply