Lucas Di Grassi took an impressive first pole position of the year in Mexico for Mahindra Racing with a 1:13.575, enough to beat Andretti’s Jake Dennis as he faced an issue with a broken front wing.
The Brazilian driver made an excellent start to the new season by showing off his pace in the heated Qualifying session to secure his fourth career pole position with an almost three seconds gap ahead of Dennis. The pole promoted him to the lead in the Drivers’ standings since winning his title in Season 2.
Debutant Jake Hughes impressed the grid by claiming third in his first-ever Qualifying with NEOM McLaren after setting the quickest time of the day in Group B and bypassing compatriot Dan Ticktum, who ended up fifth for NIO 333 Andretti’s second driver Andre Lotterer had to finish fourth with a big lockup that cost him the front row.
Moreover, Pascal Wehrlein completed the session in sixth for Porsche with a tight 0.29s gap to Jake Dennis, which put him ahead of Envision Racing’s newest addition Sebastian Buemi and Nissan’s rookie in the eighth.
Antonio Da Costa made it to ninth in the second Porsche car ahead of Jaguar’s Mitch Evans, and DS PENSKE’s Jean-Eric Vergne gave his best to finish in 11th, proving a massive turn-up from his and the team’s strong pace in Free Practice 1 and testing.
Just 0.198s behind him, Sergio Sette Camara, claimed 13th for NIO 333 as the reigning champion Stoffel Vandoorne had to settle 14th ahead of NEOM McLaren’s Rene Rast. The Maserati MSG Racing’s duo Edoardo Mortara and Maximilian Guenther ended the session in the 16th and 17th fastest, respectively.
Lastly, both ABT drivers Nico Mueller and Robin Frijns sealed 18th and 19th ahead of Nissan’s Norman Nato, as Sam Bird ended in 21st for Jaguar alongside Oliver Rowland in 22nd for Mahindra.
Di Grassi will start from the pole today in his debut with the Indian outfit at 14.00 local time.