Felix Rosenqvist took pole position for the second round of the FIA Formula E Championship in Hong Kong today after a spectacular display of aggressive street driving.
The Mahindra driver claimed his fourth pole of his short Formula E career peaking on a 1:02.836, to reprise his previous top spots at Marrakesh, Berlin and Montreal last season.
“I am surprised and happy as it was not my cleanest lap and there was a lot of sideways action going on, but we will take that,” said Rosenqvist.
Just 0.054s was the margin that the Swede held over Panasonic Jaguar Racing driver Mitch Evans who easily sealed his and his teams’ best ever qualifying performance.
Formula E rookie Edoardo Mortara starts from third as he impressed with a 1:03.180s lap in his Venturi VM200-FE.
Joining Mortara on the second row of the grid should have been Sam Bird who set a time just 0.002s in arrears of the Venturi driver. However, Bird will be shuffled down to 13th position after his penalty for yesterday’s pit lane incident is applied.
Daniel Abt benefits from Bird’s sanction and will start from fourth position in his Audi e-tron FE04 but had his lap compromised after glancing a wall and damaging his steering.
Just missing out on making it through to the Super Pole session was Alex Lynn who placed sixth after the group runs. The British driver though will start fifth as he benefits from his teammate Bird’s grid penalty.
Antonio Felix da Costa continued his good form so far this weekend and will start from sixth, the same position he finished yesterday’s race in his Andretti car.
Saturday pole sitter Jean-Eric Vergne had a subdued session which was only good enough for a seventh placed start.
NIO pair Oliver Turvey and Luca Filippi will start together in eighth and ninth place, while Nick Heidfeld completes the top ten in his Mahindra M4Electro.
The group session also saw more disappointment for Sebastien Buemi who glanced the wall at Turn 5 on his lap meaning he starts dead last. It is the second time Buemi has started from the back of the grid. At Buenos Aires in 2016 he managed to cut through the field from the rear to finish in a remarkable second place.
“I touched the wall and damaged the car, so obviously the qualifying was over for me,” said Buemi.
Reigning champion Lucas di Grassi had another poor session and was again out-qualified by his Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler teammate Daniel Abt and will start from 12th position.
Formula E rookie Kamui Kobayashi continued to impress of minimal testing in his Andretti ATEC-03. The Toyota LMP driver will start 16th.
The second Hong Kong E-Prix will get underway at 15.00 local time.