RED HOOK, NY – Alex Lynn made an immediate impact on the Formula E paddock by scoring pole position for his debut race in New York City on Saturay afternoon.
2014 GP3 Series champion and ex-Williams Formula 1 junior Lynn has worked with DS Virgin Racing in a reserve role since January, and was given the nod for this weekend’s inaugural New York event in place of Jose Maria Lopez, who is tied up at the Nürburgring in the FIA World Endurance Championship.
Lynn was fourth-fastest in the initial qualifying heats before going fastest of all in the Super Pole shoot-out, beating Daniel Abt to P1.
The result makes Lynn the second driver to score pole position for their debut Formula E race, following in the footsteps of Jean-Eric Vergne at Punta del Este in 2014.
Formula E is just the latest part of a mixed racing program for Lynn in 2017 that has also seen him win the 12 Hours of Sebring with Wayne Taylor Racing and race for G-Drive in the WEC’s LMP2 class, taking pole position at Le Mans.
Abt will start alongside Lynn on the front row, with Vergne and Sam Bird, Lynn’s DS Virgin Racing teammate, P3 and P4 respectively.
Jerome d’Ambrosio was fifth-fastest for Faraday Future Dragon Racing ahead of Nick Heidfeld and Nelson Piquet Jr., while Oliver Turvey was eighth. Nicolas Prost and Lucas di Grassi completed the top 10, the latter missing out on a chance to capitalize on title rival Sebastien Buemi’s absence.
Well-known sports car team owner and automobile dealership owner Dave Maraj was killed Saturday night in a boating accident in Florida, according to SportsCar365.com.
Maraj’s Champion Racing teams won five consecutive American Le Mans Series championships from 2004 through 2008, and also captured the overall win in the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2005, the last American team to do so in the iconic sports car race.
IMSA President Scott Atherton released the following statement mourning Maraj’s passing:
“All of us at IMSA are shocked and saddened by the news of Dave Maraj’s passing. As a team owner in the American Le Mans Series, Dave and his Champion Racing organization were the epitome of professionalism and excellence, as their five series championships and 24 Hours of Le Mans victory will attest.
“Dave was a tremendous competitor and a great friend to all in the paddock throughout his time in our sport. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Dave’s family and friends and to all of his associates at Champion Motors.”
Maraj was a very successful automobile dealership owner, most notably Champion Motors and Champion Porsche in Pompano Beach, Florida, the latter considered the No. 1 Porsche dealer in the U.S.
Details of how Maraj died have not been released.
Maraj sold his racing operation after the 2008 season and devoted himself to his Porsche and Audi auto dealerships, as well as competitive sailing.