It’s an all-Jaguar front-row lockout for the second race of the New York City E-Prix as Sam Bird leads his teammate Mitch Evans, in what proved to be a close-call Qualifying session.
The British driver needed to bounce back following his crash in FP1 and a disastrous Qualifying the previous day. His pace around the Brooklyn Street Circuit was clear yesterday as he fought his way up from 20th to ninth and clocked in the fastest lap along the way.
He quickly made amends, clocking in a 1:08.855 to top the Group Qualifying session. The Super Pole shootout also featured his teammate Evans, who thanks to some drizzle later in the session managed to overcome the Group 1 disadvantage, TAG Heuer Porsche’s Pascal Wehrlein and Andre Lotterer, yesterday’s pole-sitter Nick Cassidy and Sergio Sette Camara.
Cassidy once more looked to be the one to beat, going three-tenths quicker than Sette Camara with a 1:08.663, before his compatriot Evans shot himself to the top of the timing sheets by only 0.001s. This was despite the Kiwi having a rather scrappy lap, sliding across the track and clipping the wall on the exit of Turn 9.
With the Jaguar team guaranteed their third pole in ABB Formula E, Bird managed to get the better of his teammate to secure the Julius Baer Pole Position. His lap of 1:08.572 put him less than a tenth quicker than Evans and put the British team firmly in the hunt for victory this evening.
Cassidy will line up on the second row for Envision Virgin alongside Wehrlein. A strong performance for Sette Camara sees him start fifth at Dragon/Penske’s home weekend, as the second Porsche of Lotterer slotted into sixth.
A huge lock-up for Antonio Felix da Costa at Turn 1 looked to have cost him a Super Pole appearance and the Portuguese driver qualified in seventh. Meanwhile, his teammate Jean-Eric Vergne will be forced to start from the back of the grid after slowing down on-track with an issue.
The Mahindra’s will line up in eighth and ninth, with Alex Lynn narrowly ahead of compatriot Alexander Sims. Norman Nato rounds out the top 10 for ROKiT Venturi.
Difficulties for the frontrunners continued with joint championship leaders Edoardo Mortara and Robin Frijns lining up in 14th and 21st, respectively.
Mercedes EQ experienced another difficult Qualifying session. Stoffel Vandoorne and Nyck de Vries will have a fight on their hands to get up into the points as they start down in 20th and 22nd.
Yesterday’s race winner Maximillian Guenther completes the timing sheets in 23rd, 1.7 seconds slower than Bird’s fastest lap.