Putrajaya Formula E: Sebastien Buemi claims pole for e.dams again

Sebastien Buemi claimed pole position for the Putrajaya ePrix after dominating a second consecutive Formula E qualifying session

Putrajaya Formula E: Sebastien Buemi claims pole for e.dams again

The Renault e.dams driver's superpole effort was four tenths of a second clear of Stephane Sarrazin, despite a couple of moments on the lap that included a big wobble through the fast penultimate corner.

Having set a new circuit lap record in the group stages with a 1m19.821s (1.6s quicker than the previous best), Buemi recovered from a less-than-perfect qualifying lap to post a 1m20.196s in the superpole.

That knocked Sarrazin, arguably the star performer in qualifying, from pole by 0.4s but the Venturi driver was still delighted to secure a front-row start.

Loic Duval topped practice but was half a second slower than Buemi in the first part of qualifying and in the superpole lost time in the final part of the lap, which yielded only a 1m20.886s.

That only just shaded Antonio Felix da Costa, who put his Team Aguri Spark SRT_01E fourth on the grid to go comfortably the best of the runners with season-one technology.

After banking his superpole place the Portuguese driver's second-row start was confirmed by a messy lap from Nicolas Prost, whose scruffy effort put him a distant fifth in his "undriveable", possibly damaged, Renault e.dams Z.E.15.

Lucas di Grassi was a match for Buemi in the first two sectors of his lap in the group stage, but clouted the wall at the penultimate corner and crabbed through the final corner to wind up sixth fastest.

Di Grassi's Abt Audi Sport team-mate Daniel Abt failed to trouble the superpole runners in 10th, while fellow strong practice performers Sam Bird and Jean-Eric Vergne had a disappointing session.

Bird was unhappy with DS Virgin Racing only doing one 200kW lap in practice and claimed the team was "underprepared", but the Briton hit the wall at Turn 3 and wound up down in 14th.

That was one place behind Vergne, who had a strong first two sectors but toiled in sector three.

Nelson Piquet Jr fared even worse, qualifying 16th of the 18 drivers and cutting a frustrated figure when interviewed on television immediately after the session.

"The team needs to get their stuff together," he said, "otherwise we're not going to improve.

"Silly mistakes cost us even more time so we need to start paying attention."

His team-mate Oliver Turvey was half a tenth slower in 17th, with Andretti's Simona de Silvestro slowest to stop the NEXTEV TCR cars filling the back row.

QUALIFYING RESULTS:

Pos Driver Team Car Time Gap
1 Sebastien Buemi e.dams Renault 1m20.196s -
2 Stephane Sarrazin Venturi Venturi 1m20.639s 0.443s
3 Loic Duval Dragon Venturi 1m20.886s 0.690s
4 Antonio Felix da Costa Aguri Spark 1m20.975s 0.779s
5 Nicolas Prost e.dams Renault 1m21.786s 1.590s
6 Lucas di Grassi Abt ABT Schaeffler 1m20.449s -
7 Jerome d'Ambrosio Dragon Venturi 1m20.496s -
8 Robin Frijns Andretti Spark 1m20.546s -
9 Bruno Senna Mahindra Mahindra 1m20.616s -
10 Daniel Abt Abt ABT Schaeffler 1m20.679s -
11 Nick Heidfeld Mahindra Mahindra 1m20.727s -
12 Jacques Villeneuve Venturi Venturi 1m20.754s -
13 Jean-Eric Vergne Virgin Virgin 1m20.820s -
14 Sam Bird Virgin Virgin 1m20.905s -
15 Nathanael Berthon Aguri Spark 1m21.270s -
16 Nelson Piquet Jr. China NEXTEV TCR 1m21.559s -
17 Oliver Turvey China NEXTEV TCR 1m21.611s -
18 Simona de Silvestro Andretti Spark 1m21.958s -

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