Formula E in Jakarta: Max Günther takes top spot in FP1, David Beckmann 18th in debut session
Max Günther has decided the first Free Practice of Formula E in Jakarta in his favor. The German Maserati driver beat his teammate Edo Mortara as well as Stoffel Vandoorne in the sister car of DS Penske - a good start for the Stellantis cars. Pascal Wehrlein (Porsche) finished fifth with good pace, debutant David Beckmann (Andretti) ended up in 18th position.
The first session of Jakarta began on time at 10:30 (CEST) at 32 degrees Celsius and in the Indonesian sunshine. As usual, race director Scot Elkins first ordered to have a full-course yellow rehearsed. Then the pilots switched to full-power runs. David Beckmann briefly enjoyed an early lead in his first official Formula E session.
The track record had been set by Jean-Eric Vergne in the 2nd Free Practice in 2022. He had needed 1:07.594 minutes for one lap. Although the Frenchman was already back at the front early in FP1 this year, he was still a good four seconds away from his best time last time out.
While Lucas di Grassi had a braking issue at the end of the start/finish straight, Max Günther set the fastest lap to date. After the first third of the 30-minute session, he led ahead of compatriot Pascal Wehrlein in the Porsche and Jake Dennis in the Andretti.
The Stellantis cars from Maserati and DS made a good impression: First Edo Mortara moved up to second place, then Formula E world champion Stoffel Vandoorne took the lead for DS. Teammate Vergne bettered him a little later. Porsche also did well at the start - Antonio Felix da Costa was fourth at this point. Wehrlein even set the fastest time shortly afterwards.
Maserati & DS dominate early in Indonesia
Championship leader Nick Cassidy, on the other hand, complained over the radio about locking wheels. And Sacha Fenestraz also had to hit the brakes hard to avoid a Mahindra in the run-off zone of turn 1. After 20 minutes, last year's winner, Jaguar, made notice of themselves up for the first time: Sam Bird moved up to P4. Then his brand colleagues also moved forward: Mitch Evans and Cassidy in the customer Jaguar lined up in front of Bird. The order of the top 5 after two-thirds of the session was: Wehrlein, Dennis, Fenestraz, Vergne and Evans.
Then Mortara turned up the heat: With absolute best times in all three sectors, he took almost half a second off Wehrlein - apparently in attack mode with 350 kW - and climbed to the top of the timesheet. His time was still two seconds off the track record though. Norman Nato spun his Nissan but well not to hit the wall. Meanwhile, Max Günther once again took the fastest time ahead of Vandoorne, Mortara and Vergne - all four Stellantis cars at the front.
Nico Müller once again put in a good performance, repeatedly romping around in the extended leading group in his ABT Cupra. Shortly before the end, all the drivers took to the track once again. Now the times were tumbling. However, Günther retained the lead and thus secured the session "victory" ahead of his teammate Mortara - a strong start to the race weekend for Maserati! Vandoorne was third ahead of Evans and Wehrlein. Beckmann finished 18th in his first practice session, with Mahindra debutant Roberto Merhi 21st.
The second Free Practice session starts at 3:10 a.m. (CEST) on Friday night. We will broadcast the session as usual for you in a livestream on e-Formula.news.