Rosberg X Racing tackled a last-minute radio problem before Extreme E’s Ocean X-Prix final.
The championship leading team won the final race of the weekend in Senegal, but team owner Nico Rosberg revealed it was far from simple for Molly Taylor and Johan Kristofferson.
“The greatest challenge [in Extreme E] is avoiding mistakes,” he said after the race. “It’s so easy to make a mistake.
“We were on the pre-grid and Molly’s radio didn’t work. So [we wouldn’t be] able to tell her which pit box she has to stop at. Then you get a penalty, you finish last.
“The radio wasn’t working, we couldn’t get to the car, it was full panic mode… Then somehow they managed to get going again. She could only hear us, she couldn’t speak back, but it was good enough.
“But it’s all these situations, it’s really about avoiding mistakes, and that is so hard.”
The final was Extreme E’s first four-car race, though only two cars made it past the first corner.
Taylor was involved in an incident as she battled door-to-door with the X44 entry, driven by Cristina Gutierrez. The X44 car suffered a mechanical issue as it bounced over the bumps, but Taylor was able to continue.
“We were on the inside, coming up to Turn 1,” Taylor explained. “It’s quite a steep bump as you go through there, so you’re just trying to keep the car in as tight as you can through there.
But, as we’ve seen in all the races, you really have to manage the car. So I tried to manage as best I could. Unfortunately, you make some contact, but it’s close racing.”
Both X44 and Jenson Button’s JBXE retired on the opening lap, prompting a red flag and a standing start for the second lap, in which Kristoffersson took over from Taylor. The standing start nullified the advantage Taylor had built over Veloce’s Stephan Sarrazin on the opening lap, but Kristoffersson still praised his team-mate’s performance.
“I was just super impressed by Molly taking care of the traffic in the start,” he said. “She did an absolutely perfect job there executing everything 100%.
“From there on, she also drove perfectly all the way until the switch. Then from my start, I had a good start and I was able to be P1 going into the first corner. From there on I was working fine.”
Kristoffersson finished 14 seconds head of Jamie Chadwick to take the victory. The team now lies 14 points ahead of X44 in the championship standings, ahead of the Arctic X-Prix in August.
Image courtesy of Extreme E