Rosberg X Racing are once again the top qualifiers of Sardinia, taking the second pole position for the team in this weekend’s NEOM Island X Prix II.
During the single-car Qualifying in the morning, RXR were the first to go out and demonstrated an immaculate performance. Both MikaelaÅhlin-Kottulinsky and Johan Kristoffersson set top times during their respective laps resulting in an overall qualifying time of 9:00:503, over 13 seconds quicker than their effort in last round’s Q1. Kristoffersson additionally set the fastest time on three out of four sectors of the track.
Conditions changed over the course of the day and provided for a challenging course in the afternoon session, with a lot of dust and some slippery sections due to the track being watered in some areas. Johan Kristoffersson kicked off the five-car Qualifying session 2, taking the left route from the start, closely followed by Sebastian Loeb in the X44 and Timo Scheider from XITE Energy Racing. The Swede managed to take the lead, but the trio remained together quite closely, with Loeb staying in Kristoffersson’s rear view mirrors. The battle for the lead continued between X44 and RXR until the switch zone and Kristoffersson arrived with a tiny gap of just one second on Loeb.
The pressure was high for Mikaela Åhlin-Kottulinsky, but she didn’t let that get to her. With Cristina Gutierrez starting closely behind her, Ahlin-Kottulinsky managed to extend the gap between the X44 car by two seconds at waypoint flag no.3 as she pushed her ODYSSEY 21 to the limit. Using her hyperdrive towards the end of her lap, the 29-year-old handed RXR the second pole position this week.
Nico Rosberg, CEO of Rosberg X Racing, said: “It is fantastic to be top qualifiers once again on this course, which sets us up well for the semi-final. I am proud of the entire team, especially Mikaela, who did a phenomenal job today. This morning she even outpaced Sebastian Loeb in the traction challenge and was only a couple of seconds away from Johan on the whole lap. We are confident for tomorrow, but we still have a long weekend ahead of us.”
Mikaela Åhlin-Kottulinsky, Rosberg X Racing driver, commented: “I think this was the best qualifying session for me since I started in Extreme E, so this day was epic for me. Johan and I prepared intensely yesterday, and the team worked very hard on the car after our impact in the first race, so I am glad that it all worked out in our favour.”
Rosberg X Racing driver, Johan Kristoffersson, added: “I am very happy with our performance. It was quite slippery on the track, so I took it steady until Sebastian used his hyperdrive at waypoint 20. We only had a small gap on him, but I was very confident when I handed over to Mikaela. She is a phenomenal driver and I am truly impressed with her performance. Tomorrow will be great.”
The semi-finals begin tomorrow at 10.00 CET. For information on how to watch the Island X Prix II, please visit https://www.extreme-e.com/en/broadcast-information.