Nick Cassidy claimed pole position for the second time in Formula E as he topped the Super Pole qualifying, leading veteran Jean-Eric Vergne and Alexander Lynn in second and third respectively for today’s race.
During the morning practice sessions, the top 10 were within 1.1 seconds of each other, with 12 drivers coming into the E-Prix with 24 points separating them, paving the way for a competitive race for who will win the 7th season of Formula E. Currently, Edoardo Mortara leads the championship after a win and podium in the two races in Puebla, capitalizing on the misfortunes of Porsche’s Pascal Wehrlein.
As part of Qualifying group 1, Mitch Evans, Nyck de Vries, Mortara, Rene Rast, Robin Frijns, and Antonio Felix da Costa went on the track, with da Costa opting not to do an out lap. Q1 saw Frijns narrowly edge out da Costa and Evans, with championship leader Mortara suffering from a disappointing result of P6.
More disappointment awaits Mortara as he is under investigation for allegedly impeding another driver (Rene Rast) while attempting to set his own time in Q1.
Q2 saw drivers aggressively putting in a good lap, as Jake Dennis initially set a time 3 hundredths behind Q1 leader Frijns, with Wehrlein and Stoffel Vandoorne slowly closing in. Nissan’s Oliver Rowland touchers Jaguar’s Sam Bird in an incident that brought out the red flag.
While Bird was supposedly three-tenths off the pace, it was a shocking result for Jaguar as their lap was impeded by the flag. Cars then proceeded to line up at the pit exit for the restart.
The restart meant teams could only do an out-lap and a power lap, raising the stakes in Q2. Things got intense as drivers kept setting personal bests and Vergne of DS Techeetah even finishing P1, ahead of Wehrlein and Rowland. Dennis was also part of the top 6, with Vandoorne missing out by the end of his lap.
Q3 saw drivers attempt to leapfrog themselves into the top 6, with four of the six drivers successfully setting a time to slide into it. They were Vergne, Wehrlein, Cassidy, Maximillian Gunther for BMW I Andretti, Lynn for Mahindra Racing, and Luca Di Grassi for Audi. There were spots of water on the track mid-Q3 but it dried up by the end of it.
The goal for the drivers and teams is to qualify for the Super Pole, which is where the fastest drivers in all previous qualifying sessions get put into a qualifying shootout.
Q4 opened the way for the last 6 drivers to try and qualify for the Super Pole as the bottom six in the championship wrestle their way to a good power lap. Sebastien Buemi, who topped Practice 2, went across the line 6 hundredths ahead of Vergne, going into first place.
In the end, Lynn, Gunther, Cassidy, Wehrlein, Vergne, and Buemi qualify for the Super Pole in that order, with Buemi gaining a point for topping group qualifying in this New York E-Prix and potentially take his fourth pole position this season.
The Super Pole turned out eventful as drivers attempted to set flawless laps and claim pole position for the first race in New York. Lynn sets a provisional pole as Gunther narrowly misses out despite purple sectors 2 and 3, after locking up in sector 1, leading to a gap of 7 hundredths of a second to Lynn, who was soon overthrown by a blisteringly quick Cassidy, who was the fastest in all 3 sectors.
Vergne was one of the two drivers to come close to challenging Cassidy for pole, as Vergne came one-tenth close to the provisional pole after a purple sector 2, even narrowly hitting the wall at the start-finish straight. Buemi started his lap out disastrously as he locks up in sector 1 pushing his Nissan to its limits to only finish fifth.
The Super Pole timings are as follows:
|1||Cassidy||Envision Virgin Racing||1:09:338|
|4||Gunther||BMW I Andretti Motorsport||+0.276|
|5||Buemi||Nissan E. Dams||+0.375|
|6||Wehrlein||Tag Heuer Porsche||+0.414|