Rome Formula E: Felix Rosenqvist takes pole for Mahindra

Mahindra Racing driver Felix Rosenqvist claimed pole position for the inaugural Formula E race in Rome despite hitting the barriers on his superpole flying lap

Rome Formula E: Felix Rosenqvist takes pole for Mahindra

Sam Bird qualified second ahead of Jaguar's Mitch Evans, while championship leader Jean-Eric Vergne failed to make it through from the group phase.

Rosenqvist rocketed around the Circuito Cittadino Dell'EUR to claim pole with a 1m36.311s, setting blistering times in the opening two sectors.

He clipped the wall at the exit of Turn 12, which will form the start of the grid for the race, but was able to carry on and complete his lap to claim his third pole of the 2017/18 season.

Rosenqvist cuts Vergne's standings lead to 27 points as a result of topping qualifying.

Bird, currently third in the drivers' championship, held provisional pole after running second in superpole and was rapid in the final sector.

But the Virgin Racing driver was pushed down to second by Rosenqvist's lap, and he will line up ahead of Evans - who had to wrestle his car over the bumps under braking for the Turn 13 hairpin on his superpole effort.

Renault e.dams' Sebastien Buemi also lost time at the same point, missing the apex of the hairpin after hitting the bumps hard on the approach and losing almost a second.

Buemi will start fifth, behind Andre Lotterer, who topped the group phase with a stunning final lap in group four.

But Lotterer could not repeat that performance in superpole and wound up 0.924s behind Rosenqvist after clipping the barrier at the exit of Turn 15.

At the conclusion of the group qualifying phase, Audi's Lucas di Grassi was bumped from the superpole session by Lotterer's last gasp improvement so will start sixth.

Oliver Turvey qualified seventh ahead of Vergne, who failed to progress from group two.

Daniel Abt and Nick Heidfeld (Mahindra) rounded out the top 10.

Alex Lynn was 11th after crashing twice in practice, ahead of Andretti driver Tom Blomqvist and Nelson Piquet Jr.

Jerome D'Ambrosio and Luca Filippi did not cross the line in time to start their flying laps in group one and ended up down in 16th and 18th after only setting non-competitive times as they got up to speed.

The pair were split by Venturi's Edoardo Mortara, who finished his group three lap with broken right-rear suspension after hitting the wall at the exit of Turn 12.

At the rear of the field are Jose Maria Lopez and Antonio Felix da Costa, who were involved in a bizarre collision in the pitlane.

Da Costa emerged from his Andretti garage just after Lopez had exited the Dragon pits - the two teams are side by side in the pitlane.

The Andretti driver speared into Lopez at low speed and pinned his car against the inside pitwall.

Both drivers were visibly agitated as they climbed out of their stricken machines and neither could take part in qualifying as a result of the incident.

Starting grid

Pos Driver Team Car Time Gap
1 Felix Rosenqvist Mahindra Mahindra 1m36.311s -
2 Sam Bird Virgin DS Virgin 1m36.987s 0.676s
3 Mitch Evans Jaguar Jaguar 1m37.199s 0.888s
4 Andre Lotterer Techeetah Renault 1m37.235s 0.924s
5 Sebastien Buemi e.dams Renault 1m37.817s 1.506s
6 Lucas di Grassi Audi Audi 1m36.973s -
7 Oliver Turvey NIO NextEV NIO 1m37.045s -
8 Jean-Eric Vergne Techeetah Renault 1m37.055s -
9 Daniel Abt Audi Audi 1m37.117s -
10 Nick Heidfeld Mahindra Mahindra 1m37.365s -
11 Alex Lynn Virgin DS Virgin 1m37.546s -
12 Tom Blomqvist Andretti Andretti 1m37.561s -
13 Nelson Piquet Jr. Jaguar Jaguar 1m38.066s -
14 Maro Engel Venturi Venturi 1m38.212s -
15 Nicolas Prost e.dams Renault 1m38.410s -
16 Edoardo Mortara Venturi Venturi 1m47.802s -
17 Luca Filippi NIO NextEV NIO 2m09.829s -
18 Jerome d'Ambrosio Dragon Penske 1m42.003s -
19 Jose Maria Lopez Dragon Penske - -
20 Antonio Felix da Costa Andretti Andretti - -

shares
comments
Formula E Rome: Felix Rosenqvist leads way in disrupted sessions
Previous article

Formula E Rome: Felix Rosenqvist leads way in disrupted sessions

Next article

Andretti's da Costa gets 10-place grid penalty for Rome Formula E

Andretti's da Costa gets 10-place grid penalty for Rome Formula E
Can anyone beat Stoffel Vandoorne to the Formula E title? Plus

Can anyone beat Stoffel Vandoorne to the Formula E title?

Stoffel Vandoorne is on the brink of the Formula E title with a commanding lead ahead of the Seoul finale, but both rivals and unknowns still stand in his way. Here’s a run through of what Vandoorne must overcome to clinch the championship and how his competition will look to pull off the biggest of shocks

Formula E
Aug 10, 2022
How Formula E's most underrated driver is taming his Dragon Plus

How Formula E's most underrated driver is taming his Dragon

It might not look like the most glittering of Formula E campaigns, but Dragon Penske’s youngster has caught the eye of those who count despite his future remaining unclear. Regardless of the distortion, Sergio Sette Camara has a clear vision of what he’s focused on and how to get there

Formula E
Aug 4, 2022
How Formula E's title fight gave way to Dennis and Di Grassi in the dockyards Plus

How Formula E's title fight gave way to Dennis and Di Grassi in the dockyards

The penultimate stop on Formula E's world tour took in London's ExCeL, where the championship contenders were upstaged by two first-time winners in 2022. Andretti’s Jake Dennis kept the home fires burning in the first race as Venturi’s Lucas di Grassi claimed the second, but two consistent finishes mean its advantage Stoffel Vandoorne heading to the Seoul finale

Formula E
Aug 1, 2022
The ex-F1 racer turned Venturi team boss adapting to a Formula E title fight Plus

The ex-F1 racer turned Venturi team boss adapting to a Formula E title fight

For the second year in a row, the Venturi team is in the thick of the fight for Formula E title glory with Edoardo Mortara. That's despite a change to a more meritocratic qualifying system, which was expected to give the works Mercedes team an edge, and ex-Formula 1 racer Jerome d'Ambrosio being new in the team principal hot seat. As he tells Autosport, it's a challenge he's revelling in

Formula E
Jul 26, 2022
Why Sims is quitting Formula E to become the master of his own destiny Plus

Why Sims is quitting Formula E to become the master of his own destiny

Alexander Sims’ call to give up a pukka Formula E spot after four seasons in the series may have surprised some, but after laying out his reasoning and what he hopes comes next, very few onlookers can argue against his plan

Formula E
Jul 20, 2022
How Formula E's Big Apple crunch led to Cassidy joy and heartache Plus

How Formula E's Big Apple crunch led to Cassidy joy and heartache

Nick Cassidy hadn't enjoyed too many joyful moments in the 2021-22 Formula E campaign, but the Envision Virgin driver was the class of the field in New York - even after a sudden downpour had caused him and several others to shunt heavily out of the first race. Red flags saved his bacon on that occasion, but a 30-place penalty that cost him pole for race two due to a new battery opened the door for Antonio Felix da Costa

Formula E
Jul 18, 2022
Mortara turns up the heat on Formula E title rivals in Marrakech scorcher Plus

Mortara turns up the heat on Formula E title rivals in Marrakech scorcher

Formula E’s unplanned return to Marrakech provided teams with a fresh challenge in old but familiar surroundings, as Edoardo Mortara kept his cool in melting conditions to triumph and retake the championship lead

Formula E
Jul 4, 2022
How Formula E's double-duty drivers influenced their Le Mans teams' fortunes Plus

How Formula E's double-duty drivers influenced their Le Mans teams' fortunes

Eight Formula E drivers made the 7,000-mile sprint from the streets of Jakarta to the fabled Circuit de la Sarthe and every one had a story to share at this year's Le Mans 24 Hours. Despite a range of triumphs and disappointments, each driver doubling up on the day job played a key role in their teams' fortunes

Le Mans
Jun 14, 2022