Formula E

Di Grassi Leads Eventful Opening Practice Session for Rome ePrix

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Credit: FIA Formula E

The second double-header weekend of the season for the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship got underway in Rome on Saturday, with an eventful first practice session on the new Rome ePrix 2021 track.

Lucas Di Grassi (Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler) finished on top at the end of the session, with Stoffel Vandoorne (Mercedes-EQ Formule E Team) just behind him and Robin Frijns (Envision Virgin Racing) down in third.

The drivers and teams learned their new track and ran through their practice programs with a few bumps and curveballs thrown at them.

The NIO 333 FE team had the most damage to their cars at the end of Free Practice 1:  Tom Blomqvist hit the wall at Turn fourteen with ten minutes to go at the end of the session, and his team-mate Oliver Turvey was involved in a heavy crash towards the start line after the chequered flag was out, where drivers were lining up to do practice starts. This crash also involved Jean-Eric Vergne (DS Techeetah) and Jake Dennis (BMW i Andretti Motorsport), with all three drivers heading to the medical car for examinations.

A bump on the track between turns 6 and 7 led to a few close call for Nico Müller (Dragon/Penske Autosport) this morning who just managed to keep it out of the wall. This bump on track could cause some damage during the race if drivers drive next to one another.

It remains to be seen if all cars can be repaired in time for the first qualifying and race later today, as the damage is substantial.

111Lucas di GrassiBRZAudi Sport Abt Schaeffler1:38.785
25Stoffel VandoorneBELMercedes-EQ Formula E Team+0.062
34Robin FrijnsNEDEnvision Virgin Racing+0.246
47Sergio Sette CamaraBRZDragon/Penske Autosport+0.259
571Norman NatoFRAROKIT Venturi Racing+0.354
637Nick CassidyNZLEnvision Virgin Racing+0.355
710Sam BirdGBRJaguar Racing+0.485
822Oliver RowlandGBRNissan e.DAMS+0.773
927Jake DennisGBRBMW i Andretti Motorsport+0.802
1020Mitch EvansNZLJaguar Racing+0.822
1125Jean-Eric VergneFRADS Techeetah+0.831
126Nico MullerCHEDragon/Penske Autosport+1.068
1394Alex LynnGBRMahindra Racing+1.120
1428Maximilian GuntherGERBMW i Andretti Motorsport+1.155
1513Antonio Felix da CostaPORDS Techeetah+1.254
1617Nyck de VriesNEDMercedes-EQ Formula E Team+1.354
178Oliver TurveyGBRNIO 333 FE Team+1.492
1836Andre LottererGERTAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team+1.631
1933Rene RastGERAudi Sport Abt Schaeffler+1.705
2029Alexander SimsGBRMahindra Racing+1.914
2148Edoardo MortaraCHEROKIT Venturi Racing+1.956
2299Pascal WehrleinGERTAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team+2.923
2388Tom BlomqvistGBRNIO 333 FE Team+3.846
2423Sebastien BuemiCHENissan e.DAMS+4.147
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