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ACCIONA | SAINZ XE Team, alone at the top of the Extreme E Championship

13 May 2023
  • Laia Sanz and Mattias Ekström take victory in the Redemption Race in the first of the two rounds of Scotland’s Hydro X-Prix.

ACCIONA | SAINZ XE Team is the new leader of the Extreme E Championship after the first round of Scotland’s Hydro X-Prix, where Laia Sanz and Mattias Ekström clinched victory in the Redemption Race. It is a new milestone in the team’s history, ahead of another event this Sunday where they will aim for an even better result to try and consolidate their position.

The Spanish team made it to the weekend as co-leader of the series, but by the end of Round 3, it already has 4 points over its nearest competitor. Besides triumphing in the consolation race, the squad also claimed the Continental Traction Challenge and thus scored yet another two points for the Championship.

The first Qualifying session was cancelled due to fog on the track, which meant that the results of the second session would be the only ones that mattered to establish the starting grids of the Final and the Redemption Race.

ACCIONA | SAINZ XE Team was unlucky in its Qualifying race. Laia Sanz was set to finish third and clinch a spot in the Final, but unfortunately, a rival car threw mud on her windscreen as the cars crossed a puddle. Even though she activated the windshield wiper, she was forced to lift off the throttle due to the lack of visibility, losing one place and the ticket to the Final.

Despite everything, the Spanish team maximized the situation it found itself in with a dominant performance in the Redemption Race. Mattias Ekström did a blistering start and took the lead after Turn 1 and neither he nor Laia gave their rivals a chance, as they did not have a single overtaking opportunity.

Besides the victory in the Redemption Race, worth 8 points for the Championship, ACCIONA | SAINZ XE Team also scored 2 points in the Continental Traction Challenge as its drivers were the fastest in the timed sector.

The Hydro X-Prix continues tomorrow Sunday with the fourth round of the Championship, where the ACCIONA | SAINZ XE Team will fight for the overall victory after realizing today that its true pace is much stronger than today’s results. Its drivers will start the day as the Championship leaders.



Laia Sanz, driver:

"We can be very happy about leading the Championship by four points after all the things that have happened today. It is true you always want more and it is a shame that we could not make it to the Final. I had an issue with the windscreen wiper and it cost me one place, the place that would have taken us to the Final. In the end, the good thing is that we have the pace and that these races are really eventful. Tomorrow we will start from scratch again, but we see that we are one of the strongest teams, so hopefully we will make it to the podium, if not further."

Mattias Ekström, driver:

"The third race of the season was a different day here in Scotland. The first Qualifying heat could not take place due to the fog. The second one looked well, but then we were out of the Final and we found ourselves in the Redemption Race. We did a good race and even won the Traction Challenge, so we got two more points for the Championship. Bottomline is today we can be happy with some things and we need to make sure we are learning all the lessons from today for tomorrow."

Joan Orús, Team Principal:

"The team is really happy with today’s result. We had a bad Qualifying because due to the mud and not being able to clean the windscreen properly, we lost a place that was really important to make it to the Final. Nevertheless, we went to the Redemption Race and we managed to win the race with authority. Thanks to that and to the fact that we won the Traction Challenge, we are the leaders of the Championship, which is our goal. We play the long game. We showed once again that this team can fight and hopefully tomorrow, we will find ourselves in the same place."

Carlos Sainz:

"It was an eventful start to the weekend because there was a single Qualifying heat given that the first one was cancelled due to the fog on track. It was all or nothing, and we found ourselves out of the Final. The good news, though, is that we won the Redemption Race and the Traction Challenge, so we scored enough points to be alone at the top of the Championship, and that is a different scenario than the one we had coming into the weekend. Even though it was not the ideal day, we are still quite happy with this third round of the calendar. Plus, we have a strong rhythm to fight for everything again tomorrow."

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