London ePrix: Sarrazin claims pole for title decider

Stephane Sarrazin claimed pole position in a dry, damp and then finally full wet qualifying session for the Formula E season finale at Battersea Park.

The final two ten minute sessions were held in fully wet conditions, the first running that Formula E has undertaken since a pre-season test at Donington Park last July.

Sarrazin, driving in the first group of five drivers, enjoyed the driest track conditions to lap the 1.81 mile London parkland track in 1m23.901s.

This just eclipsed yesterday’s race one runner-up Jerome D’Ambrosio, who was just 0.064s behind and again starts on the outside of the front row.

Loic Duval was quickest in the second session which appeared to have slightly less favourable track conditions.

The Dragon Racing driver set a 1m24.107 lap to beat local crowd favourite Sam Bird, who starts on the outside of the front row. Bruno Senna starts in fifth place in the Mahindra entered Spark-Renault.

Advantage Buemi in title battle

Winner of yesterday’s race Sebastien Buemi has a significant advantage to become the inaugural Formula E champion as he will start much further up the grid than his two title rivals Nelson Piquet Jr and Lucas Di Grassi.

Buemi starts in sixth place after qualifying in group two, where he was faced with slightly damper conditions than the group one drivers.

The Swiss, who sits seven points behind Piquet in the point’s standings, even glanced the concrete wall coming out of Turn 1, leaving a large and distinctive rubber mark.

Fellow title protagonists Piquet and Di Grassi start 16th and 14th respectively. Di Grassi set what was effectively the ‘wet pole’ lap with a 1m32.570s, stating it was "the maximum" he could do.

Qualifying in the third session, Piquet had survived several lurid sideways moments as he explored the grip levels in the increasingly damp conditions.

The group three qualifying session was red-flagged after three and a half minutes when Sakon Yamamoto crashed his Amlin Aguri at T13. When it restarted the track was fully wet, and with slightly better conditions in the final group, Piquet was shuffled down to 16th place.

Piquet also goes in to the race with a new gearbox, which was changed after the second free practice session this morning.

Standout wet weather performances came from Oliver Turvey and Simona De Silvestro, who will start 12th and 13th.

Qualifying results:

Pos Driver Team Time Gap
Stephane Sarrazin VENTURI Formula E Team 1'23.901  
Jerome D'Ambrosio Dragon Racing Formula E Team 1'23.965 0.064
Loic Duval Dragon Racing Formula E Team 1'24.107 0.206
Sam Bird Virgin Racing Formula E Team 1'24.241 0.340
Bruno Senna Mahindra Racing Formula E Team 1'24.318 0.417
Sebastien Buemi Team e.dams Renault 1'24.385 0.484
Nick Heidfeld VENTURI Formula E Team 1'25.494 1.593
Salvador Duran Amlin Aguri 1'25.649 1.748
Alex Fontana Trulli Formula E Team 1'25.689 1.788
10  Jarno Trulli Trulli Formula E Team 1'27.093 3.192
11  Lucas di Grassi Audi Sport ABT Formula E Team 1'32.570 8.669
12  Oliver Turvey China Racing Formula E Team 1'33.626 9.725
13  Simona de Silvestro Andretti Autosport Formula E Team 1'34.167 10.266
14  Jean-Eric Vergne Andretti Autosport Formula E Team 1'35.032 11.131
15  Nicolas Prost Team e.dams Renault 1'35.111 11.210
16  Nelson Piquet Jr China Racing Formula E Team 1'35.284 11.383
17  Fabio Leimer Virgin Racing Formula E Team 1'35.543 11.642
18  Daniel Abt Audi Sport ABT Formula E Team 1'38.473 14.572
19  Karun Chandhok Mahindra Racing Formula E Team 1'41.232 17.331
 - Sakon Yamamoto Amlin Aguri no time -

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Formula E
Event London ePrix
Track Streets of London
Drivers Stéphane Sarrazin , Nelson Piquet Jr. , Loic Duval , Jérôme d'Ambrosio , Sébastien Buemi
Teams Venturi
Article type Qualifying report