BMW rookie Sims leads opening day of Formula E testing

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BMW rookie Sims leads opening day of Formula E testing
By: Alex Kalinauckas
Oct 16, 2018, 3:41 PM

BMW driver Alexander Sims topped the times on the first day of Formula E 2018/19 pre-season testing at Valencia.

Sims, who will make his FE debut in the upcoming campaign, also topped the morning session at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo with a time of 1m17.567s.

But towards the end of the afternoon running, Sims moved back to the top of the overall timesheets with a 1m17.553s, as the majority of the drivers improved their best times in the second half of the day.

Andre Lotterer ended the day with the second-fastest time – a 1m17.654s, which put him 0.101s adrift of Sims.

Antonio Felix da Costa finished the day in the third place after ending the morning session as the second-fastest driver behind his BMW teammate by 0.167s.

Audi pair Lucas di Grassi and Daniel Abt both spent the morning session completing shorter runs and ended the day fourth and fifth overall.

Jerome D’Ambrosio, only announced as a Mahindra Racing driver on Tuesday morning, was sixth for his new squad, one spot ahead of reigning FE champion Jean-Eric Vergne, who was one of only three drivers that drove in both sessions not to go quicker in the afternoon.

Sebastien Buemi finished the day with the eighth fastest time, 0.547s slower than Sims. The Nissan e.DAMS driver also completed 16 laps in Alexander Albon’s car during the afternoon running.

Jose Maria Lopez was ninth for Dragon Racing, with FE newcomer Felipe Massa rounding out the top 10 for Venturi.

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Felipe Massa, Venturi Formula E

Felipe Massa, Venturi Formula E
1/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Nelson Piquet Jr., Jaguar Racing, Jaguar I-Type 3

Nelson Piquet Jr., Jaguar Racing, Jaguar I-Type 3
2/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Gary Paffett, HWA Racelab, VFE-05, is recovered by the marshals.

Gary Paffett, HWA Racelab, VFE-05, is recovered by the marshals.
3/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Jose Maria Lopez, Dragon Racing

Jose Maria Lopez, Dragon Racing
4/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Jérôme d'Ambrosio, Mahindra Racing

Jérôme d'Ambrosio, Mahindra Racing
5/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Antonio Felix da Costa, BMW I Andretti Motorsports, BMW iFE.1

Antonio Felix da Costa, BMW I Andretti Motorsports, BMW iFE.1
6/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Sébastien Buemi, Nissan e.Dams

Sébastien Buemi, Nissan e.Dams
7/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Felipe Massa, Venturi Formula E

Felipe Massa, Venturi Formula E
8/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Stoffel Vandoorne, HWA Racelab

Stoffel Vandoorne, HWA Racelab
9/15

Photo by: Alastair Staley / LAT Images

Lucas di Grassi, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler, Audi e-tron FE05

Lucas di Grassi, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler, Audi e-tron FE05
10/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Andre Lotterer, DS TECHEETAH, DS E-Tense FE19

Andre Lotterer, DS TECHEETAH, DS E-Tense FE19
11/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Felipe Massa, Venturi Formula E

Felipe Massa, Venturi Formula E
12/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Tom Dillman, NIO Formula E Team, NIO Sport 004

Tom Dillman, NIO Formula E Team, NIO Sport 004
13/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Sam Bird, Envision Virgin Racing, Audi e-tron FE05

Sam Bird, Envision Virgin Racing, Audi e-tron FE05
14/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Jérôme d'Ambrosio, Mahindra Racing

Jérôme d'Ambrosio, Mahindra Racing
15/15

Photo by: Malcolm Griffiths / LAT Images

Long-time season four title contender Sam Bird was the highest-placed Virgin Racing driver in 11th, with his new teammate Robin Frijns ending up in 14th place.

Ex-Formula 1 racer Pascal Wehrlein was 13th.

Mitch Evans, like his Jaguar teammate Nelson Piquet Jr, also set his fastest time of the day in the morning session – and they ended up 16th and 20th fastest overall, with the latter completing a mammoth 27-lap stint just before the lunchbreak.

Evans also lost a significant chunk of his morning running due to a battery change.

Newly-crowned DTM champion and HWA driver Gary Paffett caused the first of two red flags of the day when he slid into the tight chicane that has been built three-quarters of the way down the start/finish straight to simulate the tighter confines of regular FE circuits.

The crash occurred with just over an hour of the morning session remaining, with Paffett rejoining in the afternoon after his car had been repaired to set the day’s 18th quickest time.

Paffett’s HWA teammate Stoffel Vandoorne was 19th fastest, 3.47s slower than Sims, but did not complete a lap in the afternoon session.

Maximilian Gunther was the slowest driver to set a timed lap, with Albon and Antonio Fuoco, who is sharing the #6 Dragon Racing car with Gunther this week, not setting a time all day.

The brief second red flag period occurred mid-way through the afternoon running to secure a loose part of the chicane tyre wall.

Spain Valencia Test, Day 1

  Driver Morning Afternoon
1 United Kingdom Alexander Sims
BMW iFE.18
1'17.567
33 laps
1'17.553
41 laps
2 Germany André Lotterer
DS E-Tense FE 19
1'18.227
33 laps
1'17.654
36 laps
3 Portugal António Félix da Costa
BMW iFE.18
1'17.734
36 laps
1'17.727
46 laps
4 Brazil Lucas di Grassi
Audi e-tron FE05
1'17.739
38 laps
1'17.732
40 laps
5 Germany Daniel Abt
Audi e-tron FE05
1'18.513
40 laps
1'17.819
45 laps
6 Belgium Jérôme d'Ambrosio
Mahindra M5 Electro
1'19.535
30 laps
1'17.987
30 laps
7 France Jean-Éric Vergne
DS E-Tense FE 19
1'18.033
22 laps
1'18.035
22 laps
8 Switzerland Sébastien Buemi
Nissan IM01
1'18.902
21 laps
1'18.100
14 laps
9 Argentina José María López
Penske EV-3
1'20.631
29 laps
1'18.154
33 laps
10 Brazil Felipe Massa
Venturi VFE05
1'19.140
39 laps
1'18.176
32 laps
11 United Kingdom Sam Bird
Audi e-tron FE05
1'18.732
28 laps
1'18.456
21 laps
12 France Tom Dillmann
NIO 004
1'19.300
21 laps
1'18.504
45 laps
13 Germany Pascal Wehrlein
Mahindra M5 Electro
1'20.915
8 laps
1'18.606
27 laps
14 Netherlands Robin Frijns
Audi e-tron FE05
1'19.275
27 laps
1'18.690
20 laps
15 Switzerland Edoardo Mortara
Venturi VFE05
1'19.219
43 laps
1'18.707
25 laps
16 New Zealand Mitch Evans
Jaguar I-TYPE 3
1'18.747
15 laps
1'22.711
57 laps
17 United Kingdom Oliver Turvey
NIO 004
1'20.865
18 laps
1'19.053
36 laps
18 United Kingdom Gary Paffett
Venturi VFE05
1'22.083
7 laps
1'19.144
48 laps
19 Belgium Stoffel Vandoorne
Venturi VFE05
1'21.023
13 laps
 
20 Brazil Nelson Piquet Jr
Jaguar I-TYPE 3
1'21.629
42 laps
1'23.286
51 laps
21 Switzerland Sébastien Buemi
Nissan IM01
  1'21.883
16 laps
22 Germany Maximilian Günther
Penske EV-3
1'32.242
3 laps
 

 

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About this article

Series Formula E
Author Alex Kalinauckas
Article type Testing report