Photo: Renault e.dams

Sebastien Buemi Tops Formula E FP1 in Hong Kong

By Aaron Bearden, Contributing Writer

Season Four for the FIA Formula E championship is underway.

The first practice session of the season went to Sebastien Buemi and Renault e.dams.

Buemi laid down a 1:03.310s lap to lead the way in free practice 1 for Saturday’s HKT Hong Kong E-Prix, besting Panasonic Jaguar Racing’s Mitch Evans (1:03.776s) and Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler’s Daniel Abt (1:03.856s) to lead the way for the Formula E paddock.

Lucas di Grassi (1:03.969s) and Sam Bird (1:04.097s) rounded out the top five, with Nicolas Prost (1:04.129s), Nelson Piquet Jr. (1:04.269s), Edoardo Mortaro (1:04.279), Jean-Eric Vergne (1:04.299s) and Oliver Turvey (1:04.380) completing the top 10.

The brief session saw a handful of issues and two full-course yellows for the Formula E field.

After an early full-course yellow to practice procedure, mechanical issues stalled one of Felix Rosenqvist’s Mahindra Racing machines on-track to force the session’s second slow-down.

Paddock newcomers Mortara and Neel Jani each got a taste of the barrier in their FE debuts, proving unable to handle slides as each driver tapped the wall in Turn 10. Bird and Prost were both forced to utilize one of the various runoff areas during the session, and many others dipped tires into the marbles.

The paddock will return for FP2 at 8:25 p.m. ET, followed by qualifications at 1 a.m. ET. Coverage for the HKT Hong Kong E-Prix is slated to begin at 2 a.m. ET on FOX Sports 1.

Position Car No. Driver Team Time
1 9 Sebastien Buemi Renault e.dams 1:03.310
2 20 Mitch Evans Panasonic Jaguar Racing 1:03.776
3 66 Daniel Abt Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler 1:03.856
4 1 Lucas di Grassi Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler 1:03.969
5 2 Sam Bird DS Virgin Racing 1:04.097
6 8 Nicolas Prost Renault e.dams 1:04.129
7 3 Nelson Piquet Jr. Panasonic Jaguar Racing 1:04.269
8 4 Edoardo Mortaro Venturi Formula E Team 1:04.279
9 25 Jean-Eric Vergne Techeetah 1:04.299
10 16 Oliver Turvey NIO Formula E Team 1:04.380
11 36 Alex Lynn DS Virgin Racing 1:04.491
12 19 Felix Rosenqvist Mahindra Racing 1:04.524
13 23 Nick Heidfeld Mahindra Racing 1:04.596
14 28 Antonio Felix da Costa AS&AD Andretti Formula E 1:04.686
15 5 Maro Engel Venturi Formula E Team 1:04.728
16 7 Jerome d’Ambrosio Dragon Racing 1:04.766
17 18 Andre Lotterer Techeetah 1:05.455
18 68 Luca Filippi NIO Formula E Team 1:05.490
19 27 Kamui Kobayashi AS&AD Andretti Formula E 1:05.820
20 6 Neel Jani Dragon Racing 1:07.441


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Aaron Bearden is a Contributing Writer for Motorsports Tribune, handling coverage of both the Verizon IndyCar Series and ABB FIA Formula E Championship. A native Hoosier, Bearden has attended races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway since he was three years old. He can be found on social media at @AaronBearden93.