Photo: Formula E - Simon Galloway

Berlin e-Prix Qualifying: Frijns on pole as ABT Cupra claim 1-2

With a heavy downpour of rain shortly after Free Practice Three came to a conclusion, the drivers would face a wet qualifying session for the first time in the new Gen3 cars.


While drivers have to set a lap time in the opening six minutes and again in the final six minutes, drivers were expected to remain on track and complete as many laps as they could.

Nico Müller was the first driver to break into the 1 minute 19 seconds lap time, with his ABT Cupra car looking like it enjoys the wet weather.

Jake Dennis (Avalanche Andretti) was second and had a major slide which he recovered to complete the lap.

The British driver would then move to the top of the leaderboard before Championship leader, Pascal Wehrlein (TAG Heuer Porsche) went 0.021 seconds faster.

Going into the final three minutes, it was Wehrlein, Dennis, Müller and DS Penske’s Jean-Éric Vergne in the top four and progressing to the duels if they remained there.

Müller then went fastest by 0.130 seconds, with him hoping to claim the team’s first progression to the duels.


Wehrlein went fastest moments after the chequered flag was flown, but it was Vergne that ended the session fastest. Wehrlein, Müller and Dennis also progressed to the semi-finals.


At the start of the Group B session, all drivers apart from Envision Racing’s Nick Cassidy took to the track before he made an appearance a few minutes later.

Robin Frijns was the first to lay a marker down in his ABT Cupra car, going 0.7 seconds faster than anyone else before Cassidy narrowed that gap to 0.166 seconds.

Going into the final five minutes, it was Frijns, Mitch Evans (Jaguar TCS Racing), Cassidy and Sébastien Buemi (Envision Racing) that were in the top four and in a position to progress to the final eight.

Sam Bird (Jaguar TCS) and Stoffel Vandoorne (DS Penske) were the two major title challengers that missed out on progressing, with the current World Champion setting a lap time that was faster than the British driver.


It was an all German line-up in the first quarter-final as Nico Müller faced Pascal Wehrlein. After being knocked out in all three quarter-finals so far this season, Wehrlein would suffer the same fate to make it number four as Müller progressed into the semi-finals.


Vergne faced Dennis in the second quarter-final and would storm to victory by setting a lap time that was nearly half a second faster than the laptime that Dennis set.


Evans would face Frijns in the third quarter-final and it was the ABT Cupra driver that would have a very narrow lead at the end of the semi-final. He would maintain his lead to ensure that both ABT Cupra cars would line up inside the top four, after never making the duels before.


With tensions high between the Envision Racing drivers already, the two facing each other in the quarter-finals for the second day in a row wouldn’t have helped.

It was Buemi that took victory in the duel yesterday, but today it was Cassidy that took the win by only 0.050 seconds.

However, to add more fuel to the fire, Cassidy’s lap time was deleted due to improper use of the 350kw mode, which meant that Buemi would progress to the semi-finals instead.


Jean-Éric Vergne and Nico Müller faced off in the first semi-final for a place on the front row and a shot at pole position. 
0.087 seconds separated the pair at the end of the first sector with Vergne having a narrow lead that dropped to 0.029 by the end of the second sector.
After a fairly close lap, it was Müller who would claim a front-row start at least as he progressed to the final.
Buemi faced the driver he replaced at Envision Racing and Frijns was hoping to make it an all-ABT Cupra front row.
He achieved this by beating Bueni in the final and it would be the first 1-2 for the German team, made even better with the race taking place in their home country.
It was Müller vs Frijns for pole position and it would be Frijns that claimed the spot at the very front of the grid, only the second of his career. 

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