Rosberg X Racing’s Johan Kristoffersson and Mikaela Åhlin-Kottulinsky have won yet another Extreme E X-Prix, winning the first of the two rounds in Sardinia despite contact between Kristoffersson and Carlos Sainz.
Kyle LeDuc started on pole for Chip Ganassi Racing but it was four-time World Rallycross champion Johan Kristoffersson who made the best start, racing Sainz’s Acciona Sanz down the alternate line.
Sainz was marginally ahead but remote cameras soon picked up his Odyssey 21 rolling dramatically down the road, putting him immediately out of the race and red flagging the race as the drivers entered the switch zone.
“I had a very good start,” explained Kristoffersson, “I could go a new line which I’d never driven all weekend and from then on me and Carlos were side by side going through waypoint 2, but then he was rolling so I was braking.”
The championship leader’s Odyssey 21 was looking a little worse for wear as it lost its entire front-end due to contact with Sainz, but Kristofferson stayed out front before handing over to team-mate Åhlin-Kottulinsky.
After the lengthy race neutralization, Åhlin-Kottulinsky had a five-second advantage over Ganassi’s Sara Price but got the job done to take a maximum points haul for Rosberg X Racing.
Second place marked Ganassi’s first ever podium while Xite Energy Racing’s all-new lineup of Timo Scheider and Tamara Molinaro not only brought the team into the final for the first time, but netted it a podium in third place too.
JBXE finished fourth with Kevin Hansen, returning after a back injury sustained in round one back in February, and new team-mate Hedda Hosås.
Team X44 suffered a disappointing weekend as Sébastien Loeb and Cristina Gutiérrez failed to make the final for the first time in history.
They were dumped out of the second semifinal, hindered by a slow driver change in the switch zone.
Andretti United – the only team to ever defeat Rosberg X Racing in an X-Prix – suffered a difficult start to 2022 and that trend continued in Sardinia.
Timmy Hansen was leading the way in the first semifinal and all-set to bring the team into the final, but a power issue when Catie Munnings took the wheel left her stranded and unable to progress.
Acciona Sanz wasn’t the only team with accident damage to repair either as McLaren’s Emma Gilmour suffered a roll in the crazy race.
She made contact with Ganassi’s Price and was pitched into the undergrowth and out of the event.
Abt Cupra crossed the line first in that race, thinking it may be into the final, but Jutta Kleinschmidt brought a flag down at waypoint six which earned her a 10s penalty, and allowed Ganassi to line up in the final instead.