It was yet another thrilling race weekend for Extreme E in Sardinia for the Island X Prix (16-17 September), which has ensured a five-way championship fight going into December’s Season 3 finale in Chile.
However, this time out on the Italian islands there was double the action as Extreme E shared the Sardinian terrain with another pioneering racing series – FIM E-Xplorer World Cup, the all-new electric off-road motorcycle championship, – creating a unique convergence of both two- and four-wheeled electric motorsport.
The FIM E-Xplorer World Cup concluded its inaugural campaign with a thrilling ‘double-header’ in Sardinia. The season finale saw the crowning of the first ever FIM E-Xplorer World Cup champions, creating a true festival of all-electric, gender equal and sustainable racing.
The brainchild of Carina Munte and Valentin Guyonnet, with input from Extreme E’s chief visionary, Alejandro Agag, the FIM E-Xplorer World Cup marks a new dawn for motorbike racing. A first in the world of two-wheeled racing, not only is it fully electric, but each E-Xplorer team consists of one male and one female rider.
These teams compete in a range of thrilling races, held at various locations around the world, including city streets and natural terrains.
Alejandro Agag, Extreme E Founder and CEO, said: “It was a delight to welcome this dynamic young series to join Extreme E in Sardinia. I have worked with Carina and Valentin to help bring this electric motorcycle series to life and have watched it flourish this year. It made a lot of sense for us to work together as we share all the same values.”
The FIM E-Xplorer racetrack was a 0.6km challenge in the Italian Army Training area at Capo Teulada in Sulcis-Iglesiente in the south of the island, co-organised by the Automobile Club d’Italia and Regione Sardegna.
The terrain was sandy and very dry with rocks and bushes, which added new dimensions after previous FIM E-Xplorer World Cup rounds that featured the the dirt of Catalunya, the gravel mountain tracks of Crans Montana and the wooded area of Vollore-Montagne.
Japanese outfit MIE and riders Sandra Gomez and Jorge Zaragoza were crowned as inaugural FIM E-Xplorer World Cup champions in considerable style. The runners-up spot went to the Gravity pairing of Camille Chapelière and Kiara Fontanesi, to secure second place in the overall championship. Team Maddwill, which is owned and managed by the legendary rider Robbie Maddison, secured third.
“It was great to work with Extreme E this weekend,” said Valentin Guyonnet, Co-Founder of FIM E-Xplorer World Cup. “It makes perfect sense for these two championships to complement each other, and this weekend has really proved this. I hope this is the start of a number of such collaborations.”
“I completely agree with Valentin and I think for Extreme E this is a great complimentary series,” enthused Agag.
“We have some ‘down time’ in the middle of the day during our events and the whole of E-Xplorer – the races, the format, and the messaging behind the sport – is very similar to the ethos behind Extreme E and I welcome the chance to work closely with this series again. I am a huge supporter.”
For Extreme E, Sardinia has become a staple in the off-road series’ calendar and this was the second time the Italian course was visited this season. It marked on-track success for both ACCIONA | SAINZ XE Team and X44 Vida Carbon Racing who won Rounds 7 and 8, respectively. The former’s strong performance ensured they maintained the championship lead ahead of Rosberg X Racing (RXR), with Veloce Racing rounding out the top three, while No.99 GMC HUMMER EV Chip Ganassi Racing and X44 Vida Carbon Racing remain in contention.