Mahindra Racing rookie Felix Rosenqvist produced a stunning lap to secure the Julius Baer Pole Position for this afternoon’s Marrakesh ePrix.
The Swede was second fastest in the qualifying group stages, and a lap of 1:21.509s moved him to the head of the times with only Jean-Eric Vergne still to run.
But when the TECHEETAH driver failed to leave the pit lane, Rosenqvist – and Mahindra’s – first pole was confirmed.
“It’s absolutely fantastic,” he said. “We knew in Hong Kong that we were quick and we took it to the next step here with pole. Sam [Bird] was quick so we had to push hard. The car has been quick all day so big thanks to the team for that.”
Championship leader Sebastien Buemi made an error at Turn 1, but the Renault e.dams racer made up the time over the rest of the lap to take a front row place alongside Rosenqvist. And with Lucas di Grassi back in 12th for Abt Schaeffler, it was still a good result for the reigning champ.
Sam Bird had a big crash in free practice two, but dusted himself down and produced a strong effort to take fifth for DS Virgin Racing. Season 1 champ Nelson Piquet Jr had a scrappy lap, but was happy to have made Super Pole and starts fourth.
After going fastest in the group stages, Jean-Eric Vergne was naturally disappointed to not set a time. It appears it was an error by the team, who sent him out too late and meant the pitlane was shut and he was unable to take to the track.
Daniel Abt did a good job to line-up sixth for Abt Schaeffler, just ahead of Renault e.dams' Nico Prost. Oliver Turvey will line up eighth for NEXTEV ahead of the Andretti team-mates Robin Frijns and Antonio Felix da Costa.
A big lock-up into Turn 1 condemned Adam Carroll to a place on the final row for Panasonic Jaguar Racing alongside Faraday Future Dragon Racing’s Loic Duval, who had a steering problem.
They both be hoping for better luck when the race starts at 4pm this afternoon.