Second Ad Diriyah practice also cancelled after rain

The extended second practice session for the inaugural Ad Diriyah E-Prix has been cancelled due to standing water that could not be cleared from the track.

Second Ad Diriyah practice also cancelled after rain

After Saturday’s first 45-minute practice session was cancelled due to heavy rain hitting Riyadh shortly after sunrise, a one-hour-long combined session was due to get underway at 8.35 local time.

But just as the start time for FP2 approached it was announced that the session had been delayed.

Attempts were made to clear the 1.5-mile track, with course cars scrubbing the surface to clear the wet areas.

But deep areas of standing water – particularly at Turns 9/10, which sit at the bottom of an undulating section of the track at the very start of the second sector, and at Turn 17 – remained.

Virgin Racing driver Sam Bird accompanied FIA race director Scot Elkins on a track inspection in a course car.

When they returned to the pits, several drivers – including reigning champion Jean-Eric Vergne (DS Techeetah), Audi’s Lucas di Grassi and Nissan e.dams driver Sebastien Buemi – gathered in the pitlane to discuss the situation and how it could impact the rest of the event.

Trucks capable of pumping water away from the track appeared at the problem areas, but 25-minutes after FP2 was supposed to start, it was announced that the proposed session had been cancelled.

Qualifying is scheduled to get underway at 10.50am local time, with the drivers split into four groups – two sets of five drivers and groups three and four containing six drivers.

Those groups will be run in finishing order from the 2017/18 season, with the highest place drivers – Vergne, di Grassi, Bird Buemi and Daniel Abt – going out in group one.

Drivers who have entered the series for the first time are set to run in numerical order of their car numbers.

TV cameras captured Vergne proposing qualifying become a hybrid-practice session where all drivers are on track setting timed laps at the same time, while other drivers suggested the qualifying power settings be reduced from 250kW due to the lack of preparation.

UpdateA 35-minute practice session is now scheduled to take place at 10.15am local time.

As a result, qualifying is expected to be delayed by a short while, although the exact new start time is yet to be announced. 
shares
comments
How Alejandro Agag is the Elon Musk of motorsports

Previous article

How Alejandro Agag is the Elon Musk of motorsports

Next article

FE changes Ad Diriyah qualifying format after weather chaos

FE changes Ad Diriyah qualifying format after weather chaos
Load comments
The half-term report cards of each Formula E team in 2020-21 Prime

The half-term report cards of each Formula E team in 2020-21

In an eventful Formula E season, punctuated by rain and energy-conservation controversy, the 12 teams contesting the championship have endured many challenges in the opening seven races. Here's how they've got on across the first half of the season.

Formula E
May 26, 2021
How Formula E stood up to F1 comparisons in Monaco Prime

How Formula E stood up to F1 comparisons in Monaco

OPINION: It was no surprise to anybody that the laptimes achieved by Formula E cars on the full Monaco circuit were much slower than Formula 1. But perhaps the more relevant comparison was in the racing spectacle, where FE delivered in spades.

Formula E
May 12, 2021
How Monaco dealt Formula E a winning hand to cure its hangover Prime

How Monaco dealt Formula E a winning hand to cure its hangover

Formula E faced much criticism in the wake of its maligned Valencia event. In need of a turnaround, the series' first use of Monaco's iconic Formula 1 layout provided it with the injection of thrills required to clear the fog that had enveloped the paddock.

Formula E
May 11, 2021
Why Formula E's Valencia fiasco undermines engineering talent Prime

Why Formula E's Valencia fiasco undermines engineering talent

FIA president Jean Todt wanted more Formula E coverage in the media, and got his wish when the opening Valencia E-Prix proved farcical. Despite attempts to spin the race as teams failing to get their sums right, Formula E and its governing body cannot escape blame - especially when trying to get teams to commit long-term.

Formula E
Apr 27, 2021
How Valencia E-Prix farce gave Formula E an image problem Prime

How Valencia E-Prix farce gave Formula E an image problem

Formula E was under the microscope at Valencia, on its first visit to a permanent circuit. But after a mere nine drivers were left classified following Saturday's Valencia E-Prix, the electric championship once more faced criticism after rising energy deductions and miscalculations produced a farcical affair.

Formula E
Apr 25, 2021
How Vergne and Vandoorne found redemption in Rome Prime

How Vergne and Vandoorne found redemption in Rome

Another Formula E double-header, another double dose of frantic action. While the form guide remains unpredictable following fightback wins for Jean-Eric Vergne and Stoffel Vandoorne in Rome, the speed and consistency of Mercedes – both on and off the track – could have its rivals worried for what is to follow

Formula E
Apr 12, 2021
What Nissan's commitment to Gen3 reveals about Formula E's future Prime

What Nissan's commitment to Gen3 reveals about Formula E's future

Formula E's Gen3 era grid continues to take shape, after Nissan opted to commit to the series for another four years. Nissan's global chief operating officer explains why it has thrown its lot in with FE while other high-profile marques have decided to call it quits.

Formula E
Mar 24, 2021
Why the new Formula E season got off to such a controversial start Prime

Why the new Formula E season got off to such a controversial start

With the new Formula E season belatedly getting underway in Saudi Arabia, the championship appeared to try to make up for lost time with an overspill of action and controversy on and off the track. While some talking points could have serious repercussions, it was an explosive opener for many reasons.

Formula E
Mar 1, 2021