F1 Betting OnlineFormula Ehttps://maxforceracing.com/wrc-legend-carlos-sainz-sr-joins-extreme-e-as-driver-for-qev-team/WRC legend Carlos Sainz Sr joins Extreme E as driver for QEV team

WRC legend Carlos Sainz Sr joins Extreme E as driver for QEV team

Carlos Sainz Sr has been officially unveiled as a driver for the maiden Extreme E season in 2021, with the double World Rally champion signing for Spanish team QEV.

As reported by Autosport earlier this month, the 58-year-old was expected to compete in the inaugural campaign of the all-electric SUV off-road racing championship.

This followed his initially undisclosed test of the ODYSSEY 21 car in France last month along with nine-time WRC champion Sebastien Loeb and Mercedes Formula 1 racer Valtteri Bottas.

The official confirmation of Sainz’s move to XE, which includes taking a management role in the team, was made during a press conference streamed live on Monday morning.

QEV has ties to sister all-electric championship Formula E, having assisted the management and operations of the Mahindra Racing and NIO 333 teams.

Sainz said: “It’s a great opportunity to have something new for me.

“There are two great things new for me.

“One is to have the opportunity after driving so many cars, before I finish my career I get to drive something that’s 100% electric.

“Second is to be part of ownership of the team. I will be in this area and driving the car as well. So far I have not been able to do that.

“I would like also to say I will continue with Dakar project.”

In addition to his World Rally success for Toyota in 1990 and 1992, earlier this year Sainz completed his hat-trick of Dakar Rally victories aboard an X-raid Mini Buggy.

It was at this January event he had his first look around the XE car, present in Saudi Arabia for ex-World Rallycross driver Ken Block to contest the final stage as an invitational entry.

Sainz met with long-time friend and XE co-founder Alejandro Agag – who also approached Lewis Hamilton about creating his own X44 squad for XE.

As reported by Autosport, it has now been confirmed that Laia Sanz – a 10-time motorbike finalist of the Dakar – will be Sainz’s team-mate as part of the mandated XE female-male pairing.

Although Sanz specialises in two-wheeled competition, she has made fleeting SEAT Eurocup, 24H Series and RX Lites cameo appearances.

Sanz said: “You can imagine how happy I am having Carlos Sainz as a team-mate.

“I have been following his career since I was realty young.

“Being his team-mate is a big pleasure. I hope to learn a lot and learn fast to be competitive.”

Joaquin Mollinedo, brand officer for QEV commercial partner ACCIONA – a specialist in development renewable energy technologies – added: “We have two main goals.

“To perform in the sport as best as we can and the second one is to use the loud speaker of the Extreme E platform and our own team to develop a conscience of the need for the fight against climate change to protect ecosystems and biodiversity and sustain gender equality.”

Ex-Formula 1 driver Pedro de la Rosa is expected to act as QEV team principal after departing his role as sporting and technical director for the DS Techeetah FE team.

Autosport has produced a standalone special magazine to celebrate our 70th birthday. All current print subscribers will receive a copy for free. To order your copy of the 196-page Autosport 70th Anniversary issue, please go to: autosport.com/autosport70th

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