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Formula E

Lynn tops second test day as Formula E holds practice race

by Sam Smith
2 min read

until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League

Mahindra’s Alex Lynn set the fastest time of the Valencia test so far, as Nico Mueller ‘won’ the specially-held ‘exercise race’ on Sunday afternoon.

With Lynn setting a 1m11.941 lap just before the end of the second day’s running, the Mahindra recruit’s effort just beat Antonio Felix da Costa’s time from the morning by 0.007s.

Lynn had briefly topped the times in the final hour but a near-identical lap to the one he eventually set was struck off for a track limits violation.

Nov 25 : A new dawn for Mahindra

Sunday saw the first full day of completely dry running after mixed conditions at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo yesterday.

The specially-arranged ‘exercise race’, which is carried out primarily to test race protocols such as safety car, full course yellow and attack zone transponders at Turn 2, was a full ’45-minute and one lap’ event.

This though was optional for the 24 starters and many decided not to partake in the full distance after teams sought agreement from the test organisers, Formula E Operations, not to make the full 45 minutes and one lap mandatory.

The majority of the grid did not complete the event, ensuring that Dragon Penske Autosport driver Mueller was the first to cross the chequered flag after Jean-Eric Vergne elected to pit on the final lap.

Prior to that Oliver Rowland led for the early stages with Sebastien Buemi on his tail followed by the Mercedes-Benz EQ pair of Stoffel Vandoorne and Nyck de Vries.

Two full course yellow and safety car procedural exercises were carried out within the first 20 minutes of the race but Rowland led until he and team-mate Buemi pitted with just over 10 minutes of the race remaining.

Formula E Valencia testing exercise race

Vandoorne and da Costa then had spells in the lead before also pitting, leaving Vergne to start the last lap in the lead, until he also pulled in. This allowed Mueller to pass the symbolic chequered flag first.

Da Costa had set the pace in the morning with a best lap of 1m11.948, becoming the first driver to get under the 1m12s bracket. The DS Techeetah driver’s time, which was good enough for second overall, was just over 0.1s ahead of Maximilian Guenther’s BMW iFE21 machine.

Fourth quickest on the combined morning and afternoon session times was Rowland in his Nissan. He headed double Formula E champion Vergne and new BMW driver Jake Dennis in the top six.

Sam Bird continued his induction at Jaguar Racing with seventh-best time, just 0.008s clear of Edoardo Mortara’s Mercedes-powered Venturi.

The only red flag of the morning came in the third hour of running when a loose piece of kerbing was dislodged at turn six and came to rest close to the racing line.

The pre-season test reconvenes on Tuesday with a further six hours of running before the cars are freighted to Santiago for the first two races of the world championship on January 16/17.

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