Rosberg X Racing looked like letting a double Extreme E title win slip away in the Jurassic X-Prix, but a conservative approach was always part of its final plan.
Going into the last race of the season, RXR knew that a fourth place finish or higher would earn it the inaugural XE title for teams, after securing the drivers’ title earlier in the weekend with Johan Kristoffersson and Molly Taylor.
Taylor got off to a great start in the final, filtering into second behind title rival X44’s Cristina Gutiérrez.
But towards the end of lap one Taylor began to lose time and when she reached the driver switch she had fallen back to fourth, and was under pressure from the Acciona Sainz car in fifth.
The battle with Acciona Sainz ended immediately after the driver switch, allowing Kristoffersson to cruise to a fourth place finish, and Taylor explained to DirtFish post-race that it was RXR’s strategy to play it cautiously in order to ensure double title success.
“Really happy to have put it all together. It’s been a pretty intense weekend, so it was just a case of trying to do what we needed to do, which was enough in the end,” explained Taylor.
“It’s so slippery and tricky, it’s so easy to make a mistake, and it’s just really the risk versus reward wasn’t in it. I got to the point where I needed to be, and then worked hard maintaining that.
“It would have been nice to have a fight at the end as well, and maybe it was possible, but you never know in those situations and I didn’t want to take any chances with the championship.”
In the end fourth was enough to secure RXR the teams’ title once event win countback was taken into account, and, while both drivers believe their consistency was key to their success this season, Kristoffersson also acknowledged that the input from team owner Nico Rosberg was also invaluable.
“Me and Molly tried to work together as good as possible and trying to share all the information. Like Q2 yesterday, Molly gave me some really good advice for my run in Q2 which was very crucial in the end,” shared Kristoffersson.
EXTREME E CHAMPIONS 🏆 Celebrating in style with a mud fight!! 😂😂
I'm so proud of our @rosbergxracing team to win the first-ever Extreme E Championship 🙌 It's been such an intense season – racing in some of the world's most remote locations…this one is forever! pic.twitter.com/7yhsAwTaJG
— Nico Rosberg (@NicoRosberg) December 19, 2021
“That communication is super important, but also not to forget Nico. He’s also been a driver for many, many years, and not so bad either.
“He has some good advice as well. Trying to always push for the better. And he’s really hands-on in the team as well. He really wants us to do well, also that’s helped us.”
Rosberg’s own driving career did not include off-road motorsport, but he was Formula 1 world champion in 2016 and has now won multiple titles as a team boss since retiring from the cockpit. He celebrated his team’s clean sweep of the inaugural XE season by throwing his drivers in the mud by the paddock.