"Drivers Reflect on 'Awesome' Enel X Island X Prix Course"
October 22, 2021 Press Release
The wondering is over, the pondering is done, the Extreme E teams and drivers have now explored the unique route for the Enel X Island X Prix in Sardinia on foot, ahead of Free Practice taking place today (Friday).
The specific details about the course are delivered to the teams at the same time as part of giving equal opportunity to all 18 drivers. The nine teams then have the opportunity to walk – or cycle in the Rosberg X Racing team’s case – the seven-kilometre route to learn as much as possible ahead of climbing aboard their team’s ODYSSEY 21 E-SUVs for race weekend.
Speaking on their return to the paddock, drivers were excited by the latest venue on the 2021 schedule, but while the track has now been analsysed, several areas, the drivers say, will remain unknown until action gets underway.
“The track is awesome, it’s the first kind for Extreme E that is more hard-packed, and there’s a lot of option sections,” said SEGI TV Chip Ganassi Racing’s Sara Price “The start is going to be complete madness I think. You have to choose from multiple options, we’re not necessarily going to have the option to pick our gate all the time so you will kind of have to see what gate you get and pick a line from that.”
ABT CUPRA XE’s Mattias Ekstrom was also quick to talk about the start area, and the faster section towards the end of the lap. “The start with all the different options up to gate number two is super exciting, especially in the final where there will be five cars with different options, the traffic jam into gate two will be great,” said the Swede. “I think I know where I want to drive. The start and some places on the track, there are a couple of options but I am pretty confident that I have found my place, now let’s see if someone else finds something better. There’s some really high-speed stuff towards the end as well with some really big jumps, so we get some air time. It’s a cool place.”
Aside from the rocks and compressions highlighted by Championship drivers Timo Scheider and Tamara Molinaro in the track reveal on Thursday, one of the biggest unknowns for the competitors is the addition of the two water splashes on the route, something that didn’t go so well for Price on her track walk.
“I got stuck in the mud today,” she laughed. “The mud and water will be something you just have to get through. There’s a lot of rocks and ditches here, things that can really end your day, so this course is going to be somewhere where you have to drive fast where you can, but also be smart where you can.”
Ekstrom says it will be a case of who is bravest the soonest in finding the fastest line through the water splashes. “I mean there’s a shallow way, but if you go full send through the middle where it’s the deepest, once one starts everybody will do the same, but who will dare to do it first is the question,” he grinned.
The learning will continue today with the Shakedown Show, which will be broadcast this evening at 19:00 – 19:30 UTC.