- Robin Frijns picked up the pieces to take his first career pole (Credit: Envision Virgin Racing)

Mercedes and Venturi banned from qualifying - the Full Story

Qualifying got off to a confusing start as Venturi and Mercedes were not allowed to enter the track.

UPDATE (27/02/2021 at 15:43pm GMT) - Mercedes announced all Mercedes powered cars will start the race. (twitter.com/MercedesEQFE/status/1365688363739713537?s=20)

UPDATE (27/02/2021 at 15:32pm GMT) - Mercedes confirmed the cause of the crash was a software issue in Mortara's car.

Edo Mortara suffered a heavy crash at the end of free practice 3, in which his car failed to brake, going straight into the wall at turn one. Although the issue is yet to be 100% determined, it is believed that it stems from the Mercedes supplied power unit.

Mortara was extricated from the car and taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital for a mandatory check. Venturi confirmed that Mortara was conscious and talking. As Mortara was assessed in hospital, an investigation was beginning.

Race control announced shortly before qualifying began that both Mercedes and the Mercedes-supplied Venturi were not allowed to participate in the session, throwing championship leader de Vries out of his current hot form.

Venturi boss Susie Wolff said it was Mortara's choice as to whether he races later tonight. "It's Edo's car" she said, "it will be his decision". However, Mortara might not even have a say in the matter as the Stewards may determine him, his teammate and the Mercedes unfit to race depending on what the FIA's investigation determines.

Qualifying commenced without the Venturi and Mercedes cars, and it was an exciting session, where top spot was traded time and time again. Sam Bird was first to strike, but Sergio Sette Camara set a stormer of a lap to take first - temporarily.

Robin Frijns, for the first time in Formula E went nearly 3 tenths clear of Sette Camara, setting up a fantastic race later today; but the big unknown is if Mercedes and Venturi will actually be allowed to compete. The outcome of the investigation is pending.

Updates will be posted to the top of this article as they come.

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Comments (2)

  • Horrible crash, well that highlights the dangers of everything being electric/electronic in a vehicle. Must have felt like a crash dummy going straight into the wall there.

      3 months ago
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