Andretti Autosport’s Jean-Éric Vergne has topped another Formula E Qualifying session, claiming pole position for Saturday afternoon’s Moscow ePrix.

The result is the Frenchman’s third pole position of the season, and sees him line up ahead of the three championship contenders with Nelson Piquet Jr, Lucas di Grassi and Sébastien Buemi in positions two, three and four respectively.

Piquet and Buemi led the way in the first qualifying group, which also contained Jaime Alguersuari, the debuting Justin Wilson and Nick Heidfeld. Buemi felt he would have set a time faster than his 1:09.826 lap, however the Swiss driver believed he was impeded by Alguersuari on his second fast run.

The second group failed to challenge the times set by Piquet and Buemi, with Berlin ePrix winner Jérôme d’Ambrosio completing a lap that would ultimately place him fifth on the grid, ahead of Buemi’s eDAMS.Renault teammate Nicolas Prost, who will start fifth. Prost’s final flying lap was on course for provisional pole after the first two sectors, however he lost time in the final part of the lap and was unable to better the first group or d’Ambrosio. Also in Group 2 was Daniel Abt, Sam Bird and António Félix da Costa, who ultimately ended qualifying in seventh, twelfth and fifteenth respectively.

Vergne and di Grassi were on track in the third group, along with Jarno Trulli, Loïc Duval and the returning Antonio García, who replaces Charles Pic in the China Racing team. Di Grassi’s lap placed him between his two title rivals, while Vergne’s pole lap of 1:09.429 ended spectacularly, brushing the wall on the exit of the final corner.

Vitantonio Liuzzi, Stéphane Sarrazin, Salvador Durán and the Mahindras of Karun Chandhok and Bruno Senna were in the final group and never challenged the times already set. Sarrazin and Durán were the fastest of the group, and will start the race in tenth and eleventh on the grid.

Earlier, Buemi dominated both practices sessions, leading an eDAMS.Renault 1-2 in practice one, in a session red-flagged when Sam Bird lost a right-rear wheel at Turn 13. The final 20 minutes of the session saw times drop from being in the 1:12s with Lucas di Grassi at the top of the timing screens, to the 1:10.402 lap which Buemi set to hold a half-second lead over team mate Prost.

The 30 minute second practice session was red flagged early when Loïc Duval’s Dragon hit the barriers at Turn 1. Upon resuming, Piquet and di Grassi traded fastest laps, before Buemi became the first driver to set a sub-1:10 lap, ending the session on top with a 1:09.985 time ahead of Vergne, Piquet, da Costa and di Grassi.

The FIA Formula E Moscow ePrix race will start at 16:00 local time (UTC+04:00), with the three drivers to receive FanBoost to be announced ten minutes before race start.

2015 Formula E Moscow ePrix – Qualifying Results
Pos Driver Team / Entry Time Gap Laps
1. Jean-Éric Vergne Andretti Autosport Formula E Team 1:09.429 6
2. Nelson Piquet Jr China Racing Formula E Team 1:09.449 + 0.020 6
3. Lucas di Grassi Audi Sport ABT Formula E Team 1:09.625 + 0.256 6
4. Sébastien Buemi Team e.dams Renault 1:09.826 + 0.397 6
5. Jérôme d’Ambrosio Dragon Racing Formula E Team 1:09.967 + 0.538 6
6. Nicolas Prost Team e.dams Renault 1:10.043 + 0.614 7
7. Daniel Abt Audi Sport ABT Formula E Team 1:10.075 + 0.646 7
8. Nick Heidfeld VENTURI Formula E Team 1:10.098 + 0.669 6
9. Jarno Trulli Trulli Formula E Team 1:10.145 + 0.716 4
10. Stéphane Sarrazin VENTURI Formula E Team 1:10.190 + 0.761 6
11. Salvador Durán Amlin Aguri 1:10.257 + 0.828 5
12. Sam Bird Virgin Racing Formula E Team 1:10.365 + 0.936 6
13. Justin Wilson Andretti Autosport Formula E Team 1:10.398 + 0.969 7
14. Antonio García es China Racing Formula E Team 1:10.537 + 1.108 6
15. António Félix da Costa Amlin Aguri 1:10.617 + 1.188 6
16. Bruno Senna Mahindra Racing Formula E Team 1:10.688 + 1.259 6
17. Karun Chandhok Mahindra Racing Formula E Team 1:10.697 + 1.268 5
18. Jaime Alguersuari es Virgin Racing Formula E Team 1:10.941 + 1.512 6
19. Loïc Duval Dragon Racing Formula E Team 1:11.141 + 1.712 6
20. Vitantonio Liuzzi Trulli Formula E Team 1:11.967 + 2.538 4

Image via Formula E Championship

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Mitch Timms

Journalist at MotorsportM8
Professional motorsport engineer and all-round tech head.