Points leader Sebastien Buemi led the way in the opening free practice session for the Long Beach Formula E round.
Renault e.dams driver Buemi lapped the shortened version of the classic American street racing venue in 57.383s, over four tenths clear of DS Virgin’s Sam Bird.
Team Aguri's Antonio Felix da Costa set the early pace before Bird took over at the top of the times.
Buemi hit the top after five minutes, the first man to dip under the minute barrier on 59.967s.
Virgin's Jean-Eric Vergne spent a few moments as the fastest man before Buemi lowered the mark again to 59.3s, but Vergne fought back on 59.2s.
Abt's Lucas di Grassi was the first man into the 58s, on a 58.892s. Buemi topped that by 0.023s on 58.869s, before di Grassi responded with 58.780s. Buemi went P1 again on 58.519s, whereas di Grassi straightlined the ultra-tight Turn 1 chicane a and slightly glanced a barrier.
All cars were running in the 170kW range, but some turned it up to the 200kW qualifying output in the closing moments, Salvador Duran leaping to P1 on 58.119s.
Buemi then rattled off his 57.383s that would remain as the best time, as Bird went P2 on 57.815s, ahead of Andretti duo Robin Frijns and Simona de Silvestro – who both topped Duran’s time with 200kW laps.
Stephane Sarrazin was sixth quickest, ahead of da Costa, di Grassi, Nico Prost and Daniel Abt.
There were plenty of incidents on a dirty track. Renault’s Prost locked up and straightlined the chicane, a move later repeated by Mahindra’s Bruno Senna. Prost then took a trip down the escape road at the very same spot.
Venturi’s Mike Conway had a huge early moment under braking at Turn 5, but kept his car out of the wall.
|1||Sebastien Buemi||Renault e.Dams||57.383||27|
|2||Sam Bird||DS Virgin Racing Formula E Team||57.815||0.432||23|
|3||Simona de Silvestro||Andretti Formula E Team||58.033||0.65||23|
|4||Robin Frijns||Andretti Formula E Team||58.039||0.656||22|
|5||Salvador Duran||Team Aguri||58.119||0.736||29|
|6||Stephane Sarrazin||Venturi Formula E Team||58.373||0.99||33|
|7||Antonio Felix da Costa||Team Aguri||58.775||1.392||31|
|8||Lucas di Grassi||ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport||58.78||1.397||32|
|9||Nicolas Prost||Renault e.Dams||58.783||1.4||26|
|10||Daniel Abt||ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport||58.79||1.407||27|
|11||Jean Eric Vergne||DS Virgin Racing Formula E Team||58.852||1.469||24|
|12||Loic Duval||Dragon Racing Formula E Team||59.039||1.656||28|
|13||Jerome d'Ambrosio||Dragon Racing Formula E Team||59.048||1.665||29|
|14||Oliver Turvey||NEXTEV TCR Formula E Team||59.12||1.737||37|
|15||Mike Conway||Venturi Formula E Team||59.276||1.893||25|
|16||Nelson Piquet Jr.||NEXTEV TCR Formula E Team||59.441||2.058||28|
|17||Nick Heidfeld||Mahindra Racing Formula E Team||59.505||2.122||20|
|18||Bruno Senna||Mahindra Racing Formula E Team||59.556||2.173||27|