Punta del Este Formula E: Jerome d'Ambrosio leads Dragon front row

Jerome d'Ambrosio ended Sebastien Buemi's early-season Formula E qualifying stranglehold with his first series pole position in Punta del Este

Punta del Este Formula E: Jerome d'Ambrosio leads Dragon front row

A mistake from Buemi and a poor lap from Lucas di Grassi allowed d'Ambrosio to lead a Dragon Racing one-two with a pole time of 1m15.498s.

The Belgian driver had been strong all day and his effort was four tenths clear of team-mate Loic Duval, with Sam Bird bouncing back from a crash in first practice to take third for DS Virgin Racing.

Buemi was favourite to repeat his Beijing and Putrajaya poles after topping practice and the main part of qualifying, but locked up at Turn 10 in the pole shootout and ended up fifth, behind championship leader di Grassi.

Nicolas Prost broke his Renault e.dams Z.E.15's front wing on a kerb and wound up sixth fastest, ahead of Daniel Abt in the second Abt Schaeffler FE01.

Team Aguri's Antonio Felix da Costa was best of those running season-one technology, while Bruno Senna and Oliver Turvey completed the top 10.

Turvey's effort was comfortably NEXTEV TCR's best performance of the season, and the beleaguered team's fortunes were boosted further with champion Nelson Piquet Jr to line up 12th.

Starting at the tail of the field are a trio of drivers who all had dramas.

Jacques Villeneuve was last after crashing on his flying lap at Turn 17.

DS Virgin Racing's Jean-Eric Vergne joins the Venturi driver on the back row of the grid after running wide at Turn 1 and later being baulked by Nathanael Berthon.

Debutant Oliver Rowland ended up 18th after a good run was ruined by a mistake at Turn 17, though unlike Villeneuve the Formula Renault 3.5 champion did keep it out of the barriers.

STARTING GRID:

Pos Driver Team Car Time Gap
1 Jerome d'Ambrosio Dragon Venturi 1m15.498s -
2 Loic Duval Dragon Venturi 1m15.875s 0.377s
3 Sam Bird Virgin Virgin 1m16.109s 0.611s
4 Lucas di Grassi Abt ABT Schaeffler 1m16.635s 1.137s
5 Sebastien Buemi e.dams Renault 1m19.811s 4.313s
6 Nicolas Prost e.dams Renault 1m15.913s -
7 Daniel Abt Abt ABT Schaeffler 1m15.993s -
8 Antonio Felix da Costa Aguri Spark 1m16.014s -
9 Bruno Senna Mahindra Mahindra 1m16.048s -
10 Oliver Turvey China NEXTEV TCR 1m16.154s -
11 Robin Frijns Andretti Spark 1m16.255s -
12 Nelson Piquet Jr. China NEXTEV TCR 1m16.300s -
13 Stephane Sarrazin Venturi Venturi 1m16.353s -
14 Nathanael Berthon Aguri Spark 1m17.573s -
15 Simona de Silvestro Andretti Spark 1m18.281s -
16 Oliver Rowland Mahindra Mahindra 1m19.414s -
17 Jean-Eric Vergne Virgin Virgin 1m19.946s -
1001 Jacques Villeneuve Venturi Venturi 1m28.451s -


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