Sam Bird and Mitch Evans delivered the goods for Jaguar Racing in qualifying ahead of the second race of Formula E’s 2021 trip to New York City, with the duo filling the front row ahead of yesterday’s polesitter Nick Cassidy (Envision Virgin Racing).
Bird’s turnaround after Saturday’s Free Practice 1 shunt and rapid rebuild hit the next level after impressive pace enabled him to recover from 20th to ninth and points in yesterday’s race. Bird had said that he felt the I-TYPE 5 was the quickest machine around Red Hook after his efforts in Race 1 and the Briton is now perfectly positioned to prove it.
“We’ve had a string of bad luck — some my fault and some no fault of our own,” said Bird. “As a team, it’s incredible and we fought hard yesterday. This is just rewards for the guys who worked so hard to give me a great racing car for today.”
Evans was edged in the Super Pole shootout by his teammate’s storming 1m08.572s at the last, though by less than a tenth of a second. The Kiwi’s lap looked like being a scruffy one with a lock-up into Turn 1 and contact with the wall through the first sector but he attacked hard through the middle section of the lap and after flinging the Jaguar out of the final Clinton Wharf turn, had done enough to clamber ahead of Cassidy’s early benchmark time.
Cassidy himself almost made it two from two in Brooklyn after securing his second Formula E pole position yesterday but he’ll still be pleased with third, having suffered a little on energy management leading from the front. The top three were split by just 0.091s.
Porsche’s Pascal Wehrlein also gave himself a strong base to work from with fourth, leaving nothing on the table through an aggressive, curb-hopping effort.
Dragon/Penske Autosport looks well placed to make progress from fifth, with Sergio Sette Camara doing the business and making the Super Pole on home soil for Jay Penske’s team. Andre Lotterer rounded out the top six with his first Super Pole appearance since Valencia.
After Group 1 drama in qualifying ahead of yesterday’s Round 10, there was yet more angst this time around with joint standings leader Robin Frijns (Envision Virgin Racing) overshooting Turn 1 and losing a second, a big lock-up for Antonio Felix da Costa and DS Techeetah teammate Jean-Eric Vergne losing drive entirely, preventing him setting a time at all.
Frijns, Mercedes-EQ’s Nyck de Vries and Vergne proved to be the big losers of those right at the sharp end of the Drivers’ points table, and will start 21st, 22nd and 24th respectively.
UP NEXT: Live coverage of the second New York E-Prix airs on CBS beginning at 1:00 p.m. ET.