X44 heads Island X-Prix practice amid further mechanical concerns

Lewis Hamilton’s X44 Extreme E team topped Friday practice in Sardinia ahead of the Island X-Prix although mechanical gremlins reared their head again to afflict six of the nine cars.

X44 heads Island X-Prix practice amid further mechanical concerns

Nine-time World Rally champion Sebastien Loeb and Dakar Rally exponent Cristina Gutierrez combined to set a total time of 11m53.421s, which hoisted them clear by 10s at the top.

The seventh of the nine teams to take to the 4.37-mile course, with Loeb opting to start, X44 demoted the rapid Chip Ganassi Racing of Sara Price and Kyle Leduc before both teams were penalised.

Price copped a 5s penalty for missing the entry to the driver switchover zone and crossing the finish line, while Gutierrez was pinged for missing the finish line and entering the driver change area.

It marked the third reprimand of the event for Chip Ganassi as the American squad and points leader Rosberg X Racing were barred from taking part in Friday morning shakedown.

Nico Rosberg’s team used e-bikes on the Thursday course ‘walk’, with Leduc returning to the paddock to fetch his own, and this was deemed not in the spirit of the regulations for giving both squads an advantage as they could cover ground more quickly.

A super aggressive Leduc also gained a further slap on the wrists from the stewards in practice when he demolished a flag at the fifth waypoint gate to the tune of a 10s hit.

Veloce Racing, with Stephane Sarrazin joined by Emma Gilmour to cover for the W Series-tied Jamie Chadwick, was the only other squad to enjoy a fully clean run and gained third.

The fourth-quickest Xite Energy Racing’s effort was swiftly interrupted after Christine Giampaoli-Zonca had handed over to team-mate Oliver Bennett, who stopped to reset the car.

Sara Price, Kyle Leduc, Chip Ganassi Racing

Sara Price, Kyle Leduc, Chip Ganassi Racing

Photo by: Charly Lopez / Motorsport Images

Rosberg X Racing was undone by the return of electric niggles, which sapped power for Molly Taylor’s second lap and caused the pit limiter to fail and killed the windscreen wipers – causing particular trouble through the two water splash obstacles.

Newly crowned Pure ETCR champion Mattias Ekstrom had his tilt scuppered by a power steering failure after a jolt, which forced the remainder of his lap and the duration of team-mate Jutta Kleinschmidt’s run to be massively below pace.

Carlos Sainz Sr suffered a similar fault after his flying start, the two-time World Rally champion having careered through a bush in a small mistake after his initial exuberance.

Sainz also clocked a five-second penalty for missing a gate, as opposed to knocking it down as the more harshly punished Leduc had done.

The Hansen brothers shared similar miserable fortunes as they endured rear suspension collapses.

Kevin Hansen’s run was hurt quickly after the Swede caught masses over of air over the early crests and nosedived on impact.

The subsequent heavy landing at the rear meant the right corner collapsed completely.

He tried to drag it to the finish before pulling out of the session.

Brother Timmy was no less unfortunate. He clipped a rock which ripped the whole right-rear wheel and tyre assembly free.

shares
comments
Extreme E reveals unforgiving Island X-Prix course through military base
Previous article

Extreme E reveals unforgiving Island X-Prix course through military base

Next article

Hamilton's X44 team on course for Extreme E Island X-Prix pole after Q1

Hamilton's X44 team on course for Extreme E Island X-Prix pole after Q1
Load comments
How technical troubles detracted from Extreme E's Sardinia encounter Plus

How technical troubles detracted from Extreme E's Sardinia encounter

Extreme E has provided thrilling plot lines in its inaugural season, but numerous mechanical failures on the ODYSSEY 21 have detracted from the closely fought battles across various terrains. Sardinia's Island X-Prix set up a championship finale, but also underlined what Spark must do to fix the car for next season

Extreme E
Oct 26, 2021
How Extreme E’s Arctic adventure gave a chilly reminder of the fixes to find Plus

How Extreme E’s Arctic adventure gave a chilly reminder of the fixes to find

Extreme E’s third round provided the very definition of extreme conditions in the Artic Circle, and despite settling on a successful format and Andretti United taking a maiden win, there remains plenty of work to do with the spec cars that froze in action

Extreme E
Aug 30, 2021
Why McLaren’s surprise electric path can benefit everyone involved Plus

Why McLaren’s surprise electric path can benefit everyone involved

McLaren's announcement that it will enter the Extreme E series for electric SUVs next year came as something of a surprise. But it brings benefits that other championships it could seek to enter cannot, while providing a timely boost to a start-up that has had to cancel two of its South American rounds

Extreme E
Jun 13, 2021
Why Extreme E's Senegal round hints at the series' true potential Plus

Why Extreme E's Senegal round hints at the series' true potential

Extreme E's second round on the sands of Senegal refined some the more clunky aspects of the series' debut event in Saudi Arabia. Even though its star-studded finale between Lewis Hamilton's X44 team and Rosberg X Racing proved anticlimactic, the pieces are in place for the series to only get better

Extreme E
Jun 1, 2021
The key area where a start-up series is outdoing F1 Plus

The key area where a start-up series is outdoing F1

While there are those – including several major car manufacturers – who think Formula E has had its day, FE founder Alejandro Agag is continuing to innovate with the new Extreme E series. MARK GALLAGHER sees one element in which it has Formula 1 beaten

Extreme E
May 26, 2021
The key figure who sells Extreme E's environment dream Plus

The key figure who sells Extreme E's environment dream

Extreme E enjoyed a largely successful start in Saudi Arabia, but questions remain over how the series can achieve its lofty environmental goals. For answers to why and where XE races, an expert voice lends vital credibility

Extreme E
Apr 6, 2021
How Extreme E exceeded expectations to pass its first major test Plus

How Extreme E exceeded expectations to pass its first major test

The racing may have lacked the explosive conclusion to Formula E's first race in 2014 and was not without its hiccups. But Extreme E's leap into the unknown appears to have paid off, delivering a spectacle quite unlike anything else

Extreme E
Apr 5, 2021
Extreme E: The team by team guide Plus

Extreme E: The team by team guide

The world’s newest motorsport discipline is set to go racing for the first time this weekend. Extreme E’s innovations and plans have raised some eyebrows, but it also provides an exciting list of competitors and teams for the inaugural campaign

Extreme E
Apr 2, 2021