Formula E in Berlin: Stoffel Vandoorne wins 1st free practice at Tempelhof, Max Günther third
Formula E world champion Stoffel Vandoorne was the fastest in the 1st free practice for the Berlin E-Prix. The Belgian in the DS Penske still undercut Jake Dennis' best time as time expired, setting a new track record at Tempelhof. The German Maserati driver Maximilian Günther ended the session in third place.
In bright sunshine and 20 degrees, the first session of the Berlin weekend began with the obligatory full-course yellow practice - as usual this season already on Friday. Nothing worth mentioning happened in the first five minutes. Mitch Evans led the field after a few laps ahead of Maximilian Günther. The most interesting thing to observe was the fact that even in the early stages, the lap times were just under a second off the Gen2 track record (1:05.893 minutes, Jean-Eric Vergne).
After a good ten minutes, a curious incident happened: Edo Mortara slid his Maserati head-on into the TecPro barrier in turn 4 because he had lost his front wing shortly before. On the radio he said, "I didn't touch anything, the front wing just fell off." The TV replay confirmed this impression. The Maserati driver drove back to the pits - still with the rattling part under the car.
Tempelhof track record tumbles
At the halfway point of the 30-minute session, Sebastien Buemi in the Nissan led the timesheet. He was followed by the two Andretti drivers Jake Dennis and Andre Lotterer. A little later, Dennis even took the lead - with a new track record at Tempelhof! Around ten minutes before the end, Robin Frijns entered turn 9 too fast and spun. The cars behind him were able to take evasive action. The ABT car also took no damage.
Nothing much happened in the final ten minutes. Rene Rast initially improved to position 4 and lined up behind Dennis, Günther and Evans. Only in the final seconds were there a few more improvements. Mortara moved up to 3rd, Stoffel Vandoorne to 4th, with Sam Bird lining up behind. As time expired, Vandoorne still turned the fastest lap and took the session win and the new track record in 1:05.803 minutes. Dennis and Günther completed the top 3, with Porsche drivers Antonio Felix da Costa and Pascal Wehrlein only finishing in positions 8 and 17.