Cassidy smashes lap record in Formula E rookie test

Valentin Khorounzhiy
motorsport.com

Cassidy eclipsed the previous record, which current Dragon FE driver Nico Muller had set in the 2018 rookie test for Audi, by setting a 1m16.910s with 20 minutes left on the clock.

The Kiwi's lap, a first-ever sub-1m17s Formula E effort in Marrakesh, was followed by the second-ever such lap mere seconds later, as long-time Formula 2 regular Sergio Sette Camara lapped 0.020s slower for Dragon.

But Cassidy then returned to the circuit for one final run, and produced a 1m16.467s in the final moments of the test, which would leave him nearly half a second clear of Sette Camara as the chequered flag flew.

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Prototype racing veteran Filipe Albuquerque – who has not competed in single-seaters since finishing third in the 2008-9 A1 GP season for Team Portugal – had led coming into the final hour and ultimately settled for third place.

Stablemate Nicolas Lapierre moved up to fourth at the death in the other DS Techeetah car, having been drafted in at late notice after the team's usual tester James Rossiter was made ineligible for the test through his FP1 appearance in place of Jean-Eric Vergne.

Driving for BMW, Kyle Kirkwood – who has won four titles on the American junior single-seater scene in the past three seasons and will drive for BMW's Formula E partner Andretti in Indy Lights this year – was an impressive fifth, while Venturi's reserve driver Norman Nato vaulted to sixth late on to finish as the top runner among the Mercedes powertrains.

Jake Hughes was seventh, running for the Mercedes works team, while the second BMW of the marque's new DTM recruit Lucas Auer made up the top eight.

Kelvin van der Linde had been quickest in the first of the two three-hour sessions, but his morning benchmark was surpassed by 10 drivers in the afternoon.

ADAC GT Masters champion van der Linde, testing for Audi, was among those drivers himself, finishing ninth as the last of those within a second of Cassidy, as Japanese F3 champion Sacha Fenestraz completed the top 10 for Jaguar.

W Series champion Jamie Chadwick was 13th-fastest in the other Jaguar entry, 1.254s off the pace.

The only driver not to improve in the afternoon was ex-Ferrari Formula 1 junior Antonio Fuoco, who wound up 22nd, a place ahead of the NIO 333 team's other test entrant Daniel Cao.

Test results

Pos.

#

Driver

Team

Time

Gap

Laps

1

2

Nick Cassidy

Virgin

1:16.467

 

29

2

7

Sergio Sette Camara

Dragon

1:16.930

0.463

42

3

25

Filipe Albuquerque

DS Techeetah

1:17.092

0.625

36

4

13

Nicolas Lapierre

DS Techeetah

1:17.116

0.649

35

5

28

Kyle Kirkwood

BMW

1:17.272

0.805

33

6

19

Norman Nato

Venturi

1:17.302

0.835

48

7

17

Jake Hughes

Mercedes

1:17.303

0.836

35

8

27

Lucas Auer

BMW

1:17.327

0.86

42

9

66

Kelvin van der Linde

Audi

1:17.360

0.893

41

10

51

Sacha Fenestraz

Jaguar

1:17.490

1.023

33

11

5

Dani Juncadella

Mercedes

1:17.594

1.127

45

12

11

Mattia Drudi

Audi

1:17.703

1.236

36

13

20

Jamie Chadwick

Jaguar

1:17.721

1.254

45

14

22

Mitsunori Takaboshi

Nissan

1:17.799

1.332

39

15

36

Thomas Preining

Porsche

1:17.904

1.437

38

16

64

Pipo Derani

Mahindra

1:17.941

1.474

37

17

23

Jann Mardenborough

Nissan

1:17.942

1.475

38

18

6

Joel Eriksson

Dragon

1:18.019

1.552

36

19

48

Arthur Leclerc

Venturi

1:18.076

1.609

38

20

94

Sam Dejonghe

Mahindra

1:18.141

1.674

44

21

4

Alice Powell

Virgin

1:18.301

1.834

39

22

33

Antonio Fuoco

NIO

1:18.825

2.358

41

23

3

Daniel Cao

NIO

1:19.234

2.767

42

24

18

Frederic Makowiecki

Porsche

1:19.374

2.907

40

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