DS PENSKE among early favourites to falter, failing to make the Duels in Mexico City

It's only the first qualifying session of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship season, but we've already been treated to some huge shake-ups on the grid! In an early shock, both DS PENSKE's failed to make it through to the duels, despite being the early favourites following their testing form.

Vergne disappointed Mexico City

Although looking fast in both pre-season testing at Valencia and the two Free Practice sessions this weekend, DS PENSKE's Jean-Eric Vergne will line up on the grid in 11th for today's Mexico City E-Prix.

The two-time Formula E champ struggled with traffic during the session and was even handed a black and white flag for slowing on track to allow drivers to pass; a one-time warning to the Frenchman.

JEV's teammate, reigning champion Stoffel Vandoorne, also suffered a shock in his group and will be starting today's Mexico City E-Prix from 14th in an ultra-tight pack. Not how he'd be hoping to launch his defence of the Drivers' title and he was only 0.150s shy of the benchmark pace.

Team boss Jay Penske labelled the qualifying as "very frustrating", fully aware there's work to do.

"After two good practices, the team was very prepared," he continued. "We couldn't get a great track gap during qualifying, and unfortunately, neither driver could put together a lap.

"If you look at the ultimate laps, we were quick in each of the sectors but couldn't put one together, unfortunately."

With Vergne topping the timesheets during FP1 yesterday and coming in second come the end of FP2 this morning, he'll be hoping that the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez circuit will give him a chance to make some serious moves up into the front of the pack.

"I think we're pretty close," Penske rounded up. "So we're certainly in the window. The team from DS has done such a great job in the factory to make these ready to race this weekend. But we just got to put a lap together in qualifying.

"We'll start a bit back today, but we will be ready to race."

It's going to provide us with a fascinating battle to watch unfold during the 2023 Hankook Mexico City E-Prix Round 1, set for 14:00 (UTC -6).