Lynn takes surprise pole on Formula E debut

by Scott Douglas

Alex Lynn surprised the rest of the Formula E field by taking pole for the first race of the New York City ePrix.

The Brit was making his debut for the DS Virgin Racing team as a stand-in for Jose Maria Lopez while he is driving in the WEC this weekend, and showed no signs of his inexperience as he topped superpole by over two tenths from Daniel Abt.

It was a stunning performance from the rookie, who can now dream of a debut win when he lines up at the front of the grid later on today.

Behind Abt was the Techeetah of Jean-Eric Vergne, and Lynn’s team-mate Sam Bird, who was unable to hook up a time close to his fellow Brit in the final shootout.

Jerome d’Ambrosio is in fifth after making a mistake at the hairpin in his superpole lap, and the Mahindra Racing car of Nick Heidfeld lines up sixth.

The two NextEV TIO cars of Nelson Piquet Jr and Oliver Turvey take up the fourth row of the grid, followed by the Renault e.dams of Nico Prost and championship contender Lucas di Grassi.

It was a disappointing session for di Grassi, who needs to make the most of his title rival Sebastien Buemi being absent this weekend due to his WEC commitments with Toyota.

If he is to close down the 32 point gap at the top of the standings he will need to make significant progress in today’s race from his mid-grid position.

Further down the grid, Buemi’s substitute for the New York races, Pierre Gasly, endured a torrid time as he failed to hook up a lap. It means that he will start second last despite having one of the most competitive cars on the grid.

And it was a disappointing session for Felix Rosenqvist as well, as the winner last time out in Berlin made a mistake on his hot lap and had to settle for seventeenth on the grid.

Qualifying – New York City ePrix

1Alex LynnGBRDS Virgin Racing1:03.296
2Daniel AbtGERAbt Schaeffler Audi1:03.534
3Jean-Eric VergneFRATecheetah1:03.537
4Sam BirdGBRDS Virgin Racing1:03.557
5Jerome d'AmbrosioBELFF Dragon Racing1:07.203
6Nick HeidfeldGERMahindra Racing1:03.193
7Nelson Piquet JrBRANextEV TIO1:03.361
8Oliver TurveyGBRNextEV TIO1:03.385
9Nico ProstFRARenault e.dams1:03.433
10Lucas di GrassiBRAAbt Schaeffler Audi1:03.480
11Stephane SarrazinFRATecheetah1:03.508
12Loic DuvalFRAFF Dragon Racing1:03.521
13Adam CarrollGBRPanasonic Jaguar Racing1:03.555
14Mitch EvansNZLPanasonic Jaguar Racing1:03.637
15Tom DillmanFRAVenturi1:03.795
16Robin FrijnsNEDMS Amlin Andretti1:03.830
17Felix RosenqvistSWEMahindra Racing1:04.300
18Antonio Felix da CostaPORMS Amlin Andretti1:04.585
19Pierre GaslyFRARenault e.dams1:04.936
20Maro EngelGERVenturi1:17.571

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