Renault e.dams started right where they left off after Sebastien Buemi easily topped the timesheets on the first day of official testing at Donington Park.
The reigning champion was over seven tenths clear of Mahindra Racing’s Nick Heidfeld and indicated that Renault may once again have the fastest package in the field.
Speaking afterwards he said, “Today was a very good day. It’s only the first day of testing so we can’t draw a lot of conclusions, but it’s clear it’s better to be ahead than behind!”
“We checked the developments we have made to the car over last year and our time – practically a new lap record! – shows we are quicker than last year. It’s a good start so we will see how it continues tomorrow.”
Behind Heidfeld were last year’s other title contenders, Abt Schaeffler Audi’s Lucas di Grassi and DS Virgin Racing’s Sam Bird, the only other drivers to break the 1m31s mark.
Jerome d’Ambrosio was fifth with Alex Lynn sixth as he was put through his paces for Jaguar as they evaluate who will fill their second seat this season.
It’s believed that they have already signed Adam Carroll, but are trying out Lynn, Mitch Evans and Harry Tincknell over the first test to see who they should put alongside the Northern Irishman.
Mahindra new boy Felix Rosenqvist and Daniel Abt were between Lynn and Carroll, who were separated by three tenths.
Further down it wasn’t a great day for NextEV TCR who ran one car for Nelson Piquet Jnr and finished down in sixteenth.
The team, who announced that they would be running Dean Stoneman on the final day of the test, looked like they might once again struggle after finishing last in 2015/16.
It was Venturi who had the ignominy of finishing last in the standings however. Both Stephane Sarrazin and Maro Engel were off the pace, despite having recently started their new partnership with ZF.
Formula E Test One, Day One Standings
|1||Sebastien Buemi||SUI||Renault e.dams||1:30.143|
|2||Nick Heidfeld||GER||Mahindra Racing||1:30.894|
|3||Lucas di Grassi||BRA||Abt Audi Schaeffler||1:30.947|
|4||Sam Bird||GBR||DS Virgin Racing||1:30.992|
|5||Jerome d'Ambrosio||BEL||Dragon Racing||1:31.203|
|7||Felix Rosenqvist||SWE||Mahindra Racing||1:31.563|
|8||Daniel Abt||GER||Abt Audi Schaeffler||1:31.712|
|10||Jose Maria Lopez||ARG||DS Virgin Racing||1:31.733|
|11||Nico Prost||FRA||Renault e.dams||1:32.309|
|12||Loic Duval||FRA||Dragon Racing||1:33.060|
|14||Ma Qing Hua||CHN||Techeetah||1:33.147|
|15||Antonio Felix da Costa||POR||Andretti||1:33.252|
|16||Nelson Piquet Jnr||BRA||NextEV TCR||1:33.284|