When the spectacular new Extreme E off-road racing series kicks off its second race of the season in Senegal on May 29 and 30, motorsport fans around the world will discover extraordinary venues and completely redesigned vehicles, but also a unique and innovative set of rules. “Extreme E is an all-electric off-road racing series,” explains Sandra Roslan, who is responsible for the project at founding partner and main sponsor Continental, “in which the route is determined by the conditions at the respective venues. In order to meet their own ecological standards, the organizers will not make any changes to the natural environment. As a result, no two venues will be the same. This will ensure maximum variety in the race series.”
In fact, the race distance is the only constant in Extreme E, with the courses spanning around 16 kilometers. Each team consists of one male and one female driver, both of whom have to tackle the course one after the other. “The equal representation of the teams is unique in motorsport and is part of the concept of the Extreme E racing series,” says Roslan. “The times of both drivers are added together.” The teams themselves can decide which of their drivers will go first, and the names are not announced until immediately before the start, thereby ensuring mixed duels during the race.
Each race weekend is spread over two days: the qualifying sessions take place on Saturday, and the semi-finals and final are held on Sunday. “There are two semi-final races,” explains Roslan. “Each featuring the three best teams from the qualifying rounds. The remaining three teams go through to the Shoot Out, and will fight for Championship points. The top two cars in each semi final earn a place in the final to race for the all-important top step of the podium.”
A HyperDrive boost will provide additional excitement. “This speed bonus is available to each driver on each lap of the race,” says Roslan. “HyperDrive can be used at any point during the weekend to gain an advantage in the race and is activated when the driver presses a button on their steering wheel. Once pressed they will enjoy an increase in power for a fixed period making timing of this a crucial decision.”
What is more, the teams can earn Championship Points not only through their overall finishes each weekend, but also along the way during qualifying sessions. “The top qualifier receives 12 points,” says Roslan. “With second qualifier granted 11 points and so on, making each session important.” For the winning team in the final, 25 points will be awarded on each race weekend, for the runners-up 19, for third place 18 and for fourth place 15. For the overall positions from five to nine, 12, 10, eight, six and four points will be awarded respectively.
The next race will be on May 29 and 30 with the Ocean X Prix in Senegal. On the banks of Lac Rosé, the pack will be completely reshuffled. Near Dakar, the teams will not only face completely different climatic conditions, but also completely new driving challenges.
1st Rosberg X Racing (Johan Kristoffersson / Molly Taylor) 35 points
2nd X44 (Sébastien Loeb / Cristina Gutiérrez) 30 points
3rd Andretti United (Timmy Hansen / Catie Munnings) 28 points
4th ACCIONA | Sainz XE Team (Carlos Sainz / Laia Sanz) 26 points
5th Hispano Suiza XITE Energy Team (Oliver Bennett / Christine Giampaoli Zonca) 20 points
6th JBXE (Jenson Button / Mikaela Åhlin-Kottulinsky) 17 points
7th ABT Cupra XE (Mattias Ekström / Claudia Hürtgen) 13 points
8th Segi TV Chip Ganassi Racing (Kyle LeDuc / Sara Price) 12 points
9th Veloce Racing (Stéphane Sarrazin / Jamie Chadwick) 8 points
In the races, which will be broadcast live all over Europe, all the teams will start with identical technical equipment: an SUV dubbed the ODYSSEY 21 fitted with 37-inch CrossContact Extreme E racing tires, which have been specially developed for the series by technology company Continental and reliably bring the vehicle’s 550 HP to the track in all conditions.
Overview of all race dates in 2021:
Al-Ula, Saudi Arabia - April 3/4
Dakar, Senegal - May 29/30
Kangerlussuaq, Greenland - August 28/29
Santarem, Brazil - October 23/24
Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego - December 11/12