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Testing report
Formula E Rookie Test

Ferrari F1 reserve Shwartzman tops Berlin FE rookie test

Ferrari Formula 1 reserve driver Robert Shwartzman finished fastest after a full day of running in the Formula E Berlin rookie test.

Robert Shwartzman, DS Penske, DS E-Tense FE23

The DS Penske driver posted a 1m01.937s inside the final hour to become the only driver to break the 1m02s barrier during the two three-hour sessions at the Tempelhof Airport circuit in Germany, which played host to the Berlin E-Prix double-header over the weekend.

The AF Corse World Endurance Championship driver completed 82 laps across the day, having also finished fastest in the opening three-hour session with a best lap of 1m02.150s.

Shwartzman’s best time in the afternoon was less than two tenths slower than the fastest time set on either day of the Berlin E-Prix races, with Mahindra’s Edoardo Mortara posting a 1m01.741s to claim pole on Saturday.

Mahindra duo Kush Maini and Frederick Vesti enjoyed strong performances as Monday’s running was the first time either had driven a Formula E car.

Vesti, a Mercedes F1 Junior and last year’s F2 runner-up, finished third in the opening session and seventh later in the day, with his morning time of 1m02.227s just marginally quicker than what he could produce in the afternoon.

Maini, an F2 podium finisher as well as a member of Alpine’s F1 young driver programme, finished the day fifth fastest on a 1m02.208s after claiming sixth position earlier.

Dries Vanthoor, Envision Racing, Jaguar I-TYPE 6

Dries Vanthoor, Envision Racing, Jaguar I-TYPE 6

Photo by: Dom Romney / Motorsport Images

The outright second fastest driver from the day was Jak Crawford, who posted a 1m02.110s for Andretti on his Formula E debut which left him 0.173s behind Shwartzman’s best.

Sheldon van der Linde occupied third, the South African having previously driven in last year’s rookie test, while his brother Kelvin competed last weekend for Abt in place of Nico Muller, who had clashing WEC commitments.

Also returning to Formula E action was Felipe Drugovich, the 2022 F2 champion driving for Maserati MSG once again with a 1m02.221s leaving him second in the morning session.

But the Brazilian proved to be the cause of the day’s second red flag as his car came to a halt on the exit of Turn 4 in the first hour of the afternoon session.

After being recovered to the pits, Drugovich was able to rejoin and completed a total of 49 laps in the afternoon before the chequered flag, setting a 1m02.171s in the final 10 minutes to jump into fourth.

The first stoppage, taking place in the second hour of the first session, had more serious consequences as Dries Vanthoor crashed his Envision at Turn 3 in avoidance of another car.

The damage to his car, which was driven by Joel Eriksson over the weekend, meant Vanthoor was unable to complete any more running for the remainder of the day.

The second Envision, driven by Alice Powell, finished the day 21st overall with a fastest lap of 1m03.454s as the Briton focused on development work with 56 laps the most of any driver from the afternoon.

Reigning F1 Academy champion Marta Garcia finished the day 18th and just 1.225s off Shwartzman’s best time for ERT having never driven a Formula E car before.

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