Sebastien Buemi topped the timesheets for the opening practice session for the Punta del Este ePrix, as Sam Bird crashed his DS Virgin machine in the closing stages.
The British driver struck the barriers exiting the Turn 5-6 chicane, having broken his front-right suspension clipping the wall at the first apex, bringing out the red flags with eight minutes of the session remaining.
Prior to that, Bird had set the pace with a best time of 1m16.327s, the only lap that had been completed using the full 200kW of power, to go 1.2s clear of Lucas Di Grassi.
But once the session resumed with four minutes to go, Renault e.dams driver Buemi embarked on a full power lap of his own, smashing Bird’s time by a full 1.1s with a 1m15.179s.
Bird was therefore demoted to second, ahead of di Grassi and Jean-Eric Vergne, who had brought out the first red flags when his DS Virgin ground to a halt after 10 minutes.
The Frenchman then failed to clear the track by the time the session resumed, causing another brief red flag interruption before proceedings got going again in earnest.
Robin Frijns made a late improvement to fifth for Andretti, ahead of Nicolas Prost (Renault edams), Stephane Sarrazin (Venturi) and the Dragon Racing duo of Jerome D’Ambrosio and Loic Duval.
Nelson Piquet Jr completed the top 10, his NEXTEV teammate Oliver Turvey losing time after a brief stoppage in the pit entry.
|2||Sam Bird||Virgin Racing||1:16.327||+1.148|
|3||Lucas di Grassi||Audi Sport Team Abt||1:17.155||+1.976|
|4||Jean-Eric Vergne||Virgin Racing||1:17.930||+2.751|
|5||Robin Frijns||Andretti Autosport||1:18.052||+2.873|
|8||Jérôme d'Ambrosio||Dragon Racing||1:18.175||+2.996|
|9||Loic Duval||Dragon Racing||1:18.274||+3.095|
|10||Nelson Piquet Jr.||China Racing||1:18.292||+3.113|
|11||Antonio Felix da Costa||Team Aguri||1:18.415||+3.236|
|12||Daniel Abt||Audi Sport Team Abt||1:18.421||+3.242|
|13||Oliver Rowland||Mahindra Racing||1:18.428||+3.249|
|14||Bruno Senna||Mahindra Racing||1:19.053||+3.874|
|15||Oliver Turvey||China Racing||1:19.120||+3.941|
|16||Nathanael Berthon||Team Aguri||1:19.305||+4.126|
|17||Simona de Silvestro||Andretti Autosport||1:19.639||+4.460|