Subscribe

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe

Loeb, Gutierrez to remain in XE with Hamilton's X44 team

The X44 Extreme E team owned by Lewis Hamilton and operated by Prodrive has retained the services of Sebastien Loeb and Cristina Gutierrez for the 2022 season.

Cristina Gutierrez, Sebastien Loeb, X44, 1st position

The duo finished runner-up in the inaugural campaign of the all-electric SUV off-road racing championship after topping all five of the combined qualifying leader boards.

Power steering issues and shunts contributed to the pair not winning a round until the finale in Dorset, where they sealed second in the table to Rosberg X Racing.

Although the two teams tied on points, a legacy of persistent changes to the format and scoring system, RXR bagged the title courtesy of three event victories.

As expected, nine-time World Rally champion Loeb and cross-country specialist Gutierrez will return to the X44 squad for 2022, when McLaren Racing joins the grid.

Loeb was among a number of the more high-profile drivers in Extreme E to press on car designer Spark Racing Technology to make the machinery more robust.

Spare-time orthodontist Gutierrez, meanwhile, fought through vertebrae fractures sustained on a rally event in Kazakhstan during the latter half of the season.

Loeb, who won his 80th World Rally event last weekend as he triumphed for M-Sport in the Monte Carlo season opener, said: “I’m very happy to be driving for X44 again in season two of Extreme E.

Cristina Gutierrez, Sebastien Loeb, X44

Cristina Gutierrez, Sebastien Loeb, X44

Photo by: Alastair Staley / Motorsport Images

“Last year was very challenging for us, we had a lot of struggles with the car and some bad luck too, but we came top of qualifying at every race and finished the year with a win and level on championship points - so we are feeling optimistic!

“I think the other teams are very strong, but Cristina and I have shown that we know how to win races in some of the toughest terrains in the world, so we will give our all to secure more podiums.”

Read Also:

Ahead of the new season kicking off in Neom, Saudi Arabia (leaving behind the AlUla desert location used in 2021) across 19-20 February, Dakar Rally proponent Gutierrez said: “We came very close to winning the championship last year and now we’re even more motivated and excited to drive well and push to take first place in 2022.

“Since I first joined the team, I have learned so much and feel stronger and faster with every race, so I’m excited to get back in the car and show what I can do.

“I’m also looking forward to exploring the planet and learning more about the places we are racing.

“By highlighting the climate change challenges faced by the remote environments where we race, I hope to further educate myself on what we can do to help.”

Be part of the Autosport community

Join the conversation

Related video

Previous article Woolridge joins Veloce Racing for 2022 Extreme E season
Next article Abt XE team signs Al-Attiyah to replace departing Ekstrom

Top Comments

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe