BUENOS AIRES – Sam Bird stormed to his first pole position in Formula E in qualifying for the Buenos Aires ePrix on Saturday at Puerto Madero.
Bird had finished fourth in the initial qualifying standings, securing himself a place in the Super Pole shootout alongside Stephane Sarrazin, Nicolas Prost, Mike Conway and Antonio Felix da Costa.
Despite expressing concerns about the extra weight of the DS Virgin Racing car earlier in the weekend, Bird squeezed every tenth out of it to post a fastest time of 1:09.420 and shoot to the top of the timesheets.
Neither da Costa or Sarrazin were able to better Bird’s time despite beating him in the first stage of qualifying and heading out on track after him, handing the Briton his first pole in Formula E.
Prost led Renault e.dams’ charge by qualifying second as teammate and championship leader Sebastien Buemi spun on his fast lap, leaving him at the very back of the grid for the race in Buenos Aires.
Despite running with a season one car, da Costa managed to qualify an excellent third ahead of the Venturi duo of Stephane Sarrazin and Mike Conway – the latter reaching the Super Pole shootout on debut.
Robin Frijns was unfortunate not to make the top five, finishing sixth ahead of championship contender Lucas di Grassi. The ABT Schaeffler driver will be disappointed not to have qualified higher, but still has a golden opportunity to capitalize on Buemi’s mistake.
Daniel Abt will start the race alongside his teammate on the grid after qualifying eighth ahead of Nelson Piquet Jr. and Jerome d’Ambrosio. Oliver Turvey and Loic Duval follow their teammates in 11th and 12th.
Nick Heidfeld qualified 13th on his return from injury ahead of Simona de Silvestro, while Jean-Eric Vergne completed – in his words “mission impossible” – to get out on track and finish 15th after his health scare this morning.
Bruno Senna and Salvador Duran both shunted their cars on their quick laps, leaving them 16th and 17th respectively ahead only of Buemi in the e.dams.