On the penultimate day of running before the cars are packed up and freighted to the Beijing ePrix, the DS Virgin driver became the first man not from Renault e.dams or ABT Schaeffler to record the fastest time at the conclusion of an official pre-season test.
Bird recorded a best time of 1m30.451s early on in the afternoon session and with the rain intensifying as the day wore on, there was nothing the Brit’s rivals could do to displace him.
His nearest challenger was Lucas di Grassi, who was just over 0.3s further back in second, while there was a gap of over half a second to Loic Duval in third.
Once again there was no running for the Andretti and Trulli teams. Andretti had ex-Formula Renault 3.5 champion Robin Frijns on hand for an evaluation and the Dutchman is optimistic that he will get some running in the team’s car tomorrow.
Despite the weather there was a strong crowd at Donington once again. Oliver Turvey kept them the most entertained, completing 54 laps for NEXTEV TCR. Jacques Villeneuve was also busy, racking up completing 37 laps for Venturi and setting the fourth best time.
Testing resumes tomorrow (Tuesday) for the sixth and final day before the season opener in Beijing on October 17.
FIA Formula E Championship – Official pre-season testing
Donington Park – Day 5 – Results:
1. Sam Bird, DS Virgin Racing, 1:30.451s
2. Lucas di Grassi, ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport, 1:30.772s
3. Loic Duval, Dragon Racing, 1:32.022s
4. Jacques Villeneuve, Venturi Formula E, 1:32.154s
5. Jerome D’Ambrosio, Dragon Racing, 1:33.419s
6. Stephane Sarrazin, Venturi Formula E, 1:33.569s
7. Sebastien Buemi, Renault e.dams, 1:33.883s
8. Oliver Turvey, NEXTEV TCR. 1:34.203s
9. Nick Heidfeld, Mahindra Racing, 1:34.501s
10. Nathanael Berthon, Team Aguri, 1:34.739s
11. Nicolas Prost, Renault e.dams, 1:34.895s
12. Bruno Senna, Mahindra Racing, 1:35.611s
FIA Formula E