The final practice session of season three of the FIA Formula E Championship went to Mahindra Racing’s Felix Rosenqvist.
First practice over, installation laps done, the focus of this session was last minute tweaks to the setup and 200kw laps in preparation for qualifying and the final race of the season.
However, before representative times started being set, Jaguar’s Adam Carroll and DS Virgin’s Jose Maria Lopez clashed out on track when the Argentine seemed to break test the Ulsterman, whilst Daniel Abt and Nico Prost also came to blows, leaving minor damage to Abt’s car and a right rear puncture.
Early session shenanigans over with, Techeetah’s Jean-Eric Vergne led the way ahead of NextEV’s Oliver Turvey, DS Virgin’s Sam Bird, Jaguar’s Mitch Evans and Mahindra’s Felix Rosenqvist in fifth. Faraday’s Loic Duval was looking fast and potentially on for P1, but locked up and went straight down the escape road to bring out the first caution of the session.
Approaching the halfway mark, Felix Rosenqvist put his Mahindra P1 with a purple first, second and third sector as he crossed the line with a 1m21.183 (the fastest lap of the weekend thus far). Elsewhere, Lopez went second in his DS Virgin – three-tenths adrift – before Sebastien Buemi demoted him to third. Yet to set 200kw laps at this point, both Abt Schaeffler Audi Sport drivers were loitering down in 18th and 19th with ten minutes remaining.
Now into the final third of the session, di Grassi set about putting in some 200kw laps, but had a shocking middle sector, meaning he had to settle for fifth. Also on a 200kw lap was Nelson Piquet Jr until he locked all four tyres, crashed into the techpro barrier and damaged his front wing. After a brief yellow flag period, he was able to get going and the session went back to green.
Putting his earlier lock up behind him, Duval went fourth, seconds before Sam Bird knocked him down a place, meaning we went into the final five minutes of the session with the top five split by less than four-tenths.
Few drivers actually went out to set 200kw laps during the final phase of the session, leaving Felix Rosenqvist on top, championship contender Buemi in second, Lopez third, Bird fourth and Duval in fifth as Mitch Evans put his Jaguar in the wall at Turn 2, ruining it for anyone on a 200kw lap as the chequered flag dropped.
Daniel Abt, Oliver Turvey, Jean-Eric Vergne, Lucas di Grassi and Nico Prost rounded out the top ten.