17 Mar 18
For the third time this season, championship hopeful and Techeetah driver Jean-Eric Vergne clinched the Julius Baer Pole Position here ahead of the 2018 CBMM Niobium Punta del Este E-Prix.
After putting it on Pole in Hong Kong (albeit backwards) and in Santiago, Vergne - who is currently leading the championship with 81 points - is in a good position to pull away from Mahindra's Felix Rosenqvist in second.
But it was Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler driver and reigning champ Lucas di Grassi who caught the attention of the crowd after a solid performance in Qualifying and Super Pole put him in second for the race here on Playa Brava. Speaking ahead of the race, di Grassi said he'll stop at nothing to make up for the disastrous season he's had so far. "We have nothing to lose, so we can be as aggressive as we want," said the Brazilian.
Di Grassi finished Super Pole on top but he - alongside Alex Lynn (DS Virgin Racing) and Oliver Turvey (NIO Formula E Team) - were later found to have strayed over the track limits, dropping them a position on the gird after a final decision from the FIA. For Panasonic Jaguar Racing's Mitch Evans, discrepancies with weight distribution will see Evans start at the back of the grid.
Starting in third is DS Virgin Racing's Alex Lynn. After he collided with the wall in Mexico City during Qualifying, Lynn will be keen to make up for lost ground. With the team currently third in the standings, the British driver is in a good place to boost the team's position as we approach the second half of the season.
With NIO Formula E Team's Oliver Turvey starting in 4th, he'll be keen to keep momentum after he clinched the NIO's first podium in Mexico City. "Formula E is so competitive now, the level of the teams and drivers is really high but I think we've definitely got the pace to be fighting at the front and we showed that in Mexico. I hope we'll be able to carry that forward and get our first victory," said Turvey.
Renault e.dams Nico Prost started the drama in Qualifying after he cut the chicane on Turn 15, breaking the front axle on his car when he collided with the wall after damaging his steering. Limping back to the pits, Prost will start at the back of the grid.
Shortly after Prost's mishap, Mahindra Racing's Nick Heidfeld failed to make Turn 17, ploughing into the barrier in front of him. Bringing out the red flag, play commenced once Heidfeld's car had been retrieved.
But the chicanes also claimed Nelson Piquet Jn's lap, after he shot across the kerbs and collided with the wall on Turn 15. The former champ will start the race in 14th.
See below for the provisional starting line up.
1 - Jean-Eric Vergne, Techeetah
2 - Lucas di Grassi, Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler
3 - Alex Lynn, DS Virgin Racing
4 - Oliver Turvey, NIO Formula E Team
5 - Daniel Abt, Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler
6 - Sebastien Buemi, Renault e.dams
7 - Andre Lotterer, Techeetah
8 - Maro Engel, Venturi Formula E
9 - Sam Bird, DS Virgin Racing
10 - Jerome d'Ambrosio, Dragon
11 - Antonio Felix da Costa, MS&AD Andretti Formula E
12 - Felix Rosenqvist, Mahindra Racing
13 - Edoardo Mortara, Venturi Formula E
14 - Nelson Piquet Jn, Panasonic Jaguar Racing
15 - Luca Filippi, NIO Formiula E Team
16 - Mitch Evans, Panasonic Jaguar Racing
17 - Nick Hiedfield, Mahinda Racing
18 - Jose Maria Lopez, Dragon
19 - Nico Prost, Renault e.dams
20 - Tom Blomqvist, MS&AD Andretti Formula E