Buemi paces Monaco Formula E practice for Renault e.dams

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MONACO – Sebastien Buemi put an early stamp of authority on proceedings in Monaco for Saturday’s Formula E event by leading both practice sessions in the principality ahead of qualifying.

Defending Formula E champion Buemi saw his run of three consecutive ePrix victories come to an end in Mexico last month after a topsy-turvy race that saw the Swiss driver finish 14th after a spin.

Perennial rival Lucas di Grassi made a bold strategy work to pick up his first win of the season and cut Buemi’s championship lead to just five points, setting the stage for a tight battle around the equally-tight streets of Monaco this weekend.

Buemi took the bragging rights through practice after leading both FP1 and FP2, heading up a one-two finish for Renault e.dams through the first session as teammate Nicolas Prost slotted into second place.

FP2 saw more teams focus on outright pace ahead of qualifying, turning their cars up to their full power allocation of 200kW, but it was Buemi who led once again, posting a best lap time of 52.729s.

Sam Bird followed in second place for DS Virgin Racing, finishing 0.068 seconds behind, while di Grassi was a further two-tenths back in third place. Jean-Eric Vergne turned in the fourth-fastest time for Techeetah, while Bird’s teammate, Jose Maria Lopez, ended the session fifth.

Lopez had been in doubt for the race weekend after missing last weekend’s FIA World Endurance Championship event at Spa through injury, but had no issues through FP1 and will complete the event as planned.