Formula E testing roundup: Vergne and Techeetah continue to impress

FIA Formula E Second Pre-Season Testing Event.
Donington Park Racecourse,
Derby, United Kingdom.
Photo: Alastair Staley / LAT
ref: Digital Image 585A5484

 

The Techeetah team has continued its impressive Formula E debut, with lead driver Jean-Éric Vergne topping the timesheets on two of the final three days of pre-season testing.

The Frenchman was already responsible for lowering Donington Park’s Formula E lap record in the first week of testing, but showed the Chinese team’s pace was not a one-off by recording an almost identical time on Monday and then lowering it yet further on Tuesday with a 1:29.196s.

On Wednesday Vergne went faster again by almost a second, but was denied a clean sweep at the top when Sébastien Buemi just edged into the 1:28s in the morning session.

This proved to be Renault e.Dams’ only real display of pace all week – cemented by Nico Prost coming third, three tenths behind Buemi – as the defending champions focused on long runs for most of the test.

But though Renault and customers Techeetah appeared to be stretching their legs in front, the rest of the field was far from left behind – in fact, the top ten was rarely separated by more than a second across the week.

In particular, DS Virgin appear to have made a significant step towards the front – aided in part by José María Lopez’s swift settling into the series – and were the only team bar Renault to see both drivers finish each day within the top ten.

Dragon too continued to show a resurgence of its season one potential, and in the hands of Daniel Abt the ABT Schaeffler FE02 looked to be at least as solid as its predecessor.

Mahindra had a somewhat muted second test with Heidfeld and Rosenqvist only managing a best of sixth and eleventh respectively, whilst Andretti and Venturi – the latter having struggled for reliability across both weeks – failed to set a single top ten time between them.

James Matthews

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