- The Italian island, host to the Island X Prix last July, repeats on the calendar to organize the penultimate round of the 2023 Extreme E season.
- Mattias Ekström and Laia Sanz scored two second places on their last visit and now lead the Championship with four points over their competitors.
ACCIONA | SAINZ XE Team returns to Sardinia this weekend to take part in the seventh and eighth rounds of the Extreme E Championship. The Spanish team travels to the Italian island as the leader of the series with a gap of four points over the second-placed team.
This is the fourth event of the season. Initially, it was meant to be hosted in a location in America, but in the end, the promoters of Extreme E opted to stay in Sardinia given the excellent relationships with the different local authorities and the many environmental threats that this Mediterranean landscape experiences.
For the drivers of the team, Mattias Ekström and Laia Sanz, this implies returning to the place where they clinched two second places this last July. A very solid result that allows them to lead the Championship with four points over their nearest competitor, Rosberg X Racing.
This new edition of the Island X Prix will take place in the same location as the previous ones: in the military training area of Capo Teulada. Still, the drivers will face a new challenge because Extreme E will create a brand new circuit for the occasion.
Global warming causes temperatures to rise and, in the Mediterranean region, more drought periods. The combination of both factors leads to wildfires and Sardinia is sadly an example of that because in 2021 up to 20,000 hectares were devastated.
Extreme E has joined forces with the island ever since its first visit in 2021, with reforestation projects (2021), prevention projects (2022), and animal conservation initiatives (2023). In this new visit, the drivers of the Championship will visit the Regional Civil Protection Operations Centre to look at how local authorities handle and coordinate the response to natural disasters. They will also visit the Sardinia Corpo Forestale, where they will have a chance to talk to people directly involved in the protection of the forests of the island.
Mattias Ekström, piloto:
“Time for a second race in Sardinia. Last time we were there we had a good one, so I look forward to the track. It was cool the last time and I expect they will improve it even more. Happy to go there and happy to continue the Championship fight. Me and Laia will both try to have a clean weekend, improve our driving, and see if we can fight for some victories."
Laia Sanz, piloto:
“I am really looking forward to getting back racing. Every race is important in this final stretch of the Championship, so we must push harder than ever. We are currently leading the standings, but there are three teams very close to each other and many things can happen. We must tackle Sardinia just like we did the last time: avoiding mistakes, trying to make it to the Final, and giving it all. The Championship is at stake, so we must go for it and have a winning mentality. We can’t be afraid of what might happen. In Extreme E, you may not be able to control some of the things that happen to you, but we must work hard in everything that is within our reach. Sardinia suited us really well in July, both me and Mattias. We were really quick, both of us. We have to work on the start, make sure that we execute them properly, and try to stay in the lead after Sunday.”
“We make it to an important weekend for the team. Two of the four races that remain in the calendar will take place in Sardinia and, if we do a good job, we might take a step forward that takes us closer to our goal. We can’t afford to be overconfident, because our competitors are very near. We must do everything right starting with Friday’s practice and give it all when the time comes. The Championship is at stake, but I have full trust in Laia, Mattias, and the entire team.”
Joan Orús, Team Principal:
“We arrive in Sardinia ready to defend the lead of the Championship. We race once again on an island that historically has suited us very well, but we must strengthen our lead with a race victory. We are here for it. We want to confirm once again that we are title contenders, this season. The team is confident and willing to prove its capacities.”