Vergne takes first pole of 2017-18 season


Credit: Formula E

Jean-Eric Vergne took a fantastic pole position for the first Hong Kong ePrix, despite crossing the line backwards.

The Frenchman lost the rear end of his Techeetah at the very end of his lap, but it was still enough to beat Sam Bird and Nick Heidfeld by just under three-hundredths of a second.

Daniel Abt showed promising pace to finish fourth and beat his Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler team-mate, with reigning champion Lucas di Grassi in sixth.

Felix Rosenqvist made Mahindra Racing the only team with two cars in the top five, although a mistake on his final lap meant he will start fifth.

It was disappointment for the Renault e.dams team as Sebastien Buemi could only manage ninth after having to go out on a cold track in the first group in qualifying, however it was worse for team-mate Nico Prost, who clouted the barrier and ripped off an advertising hoarding that then stuck to his car.

As he drove on it wafted across the track, which seriously compromised the lap of Jerome d’Ambrosio who will only start in eleventh as a result.

It was disappointment too for Mitch Evans, who despite topping the time sheets in second practice for Panasonic Jaguar Racing, failed to cross the line in time to set his full power lap.  It meant he finished at the very back, while his new team-mate and season one champion Nelson Piquet Jr was able to qualify in tenth.

And it was a disastrous session for the Venturi team, who not only had new driver Edorado Mortara clip the barriers, but having done so his damaged car then got in the way of team-mate Maro Engel who had his lap compromised and finished down in fourteenth.