WRC legend Loeb to race Hamilton’s Extreme E entry

Nine-time World Rally champion Sebastien Loeb will race for the X44 team founded by Lewis Hamilton in the inaugural 2021 season of the Extreme E all-electric championship.

WRC legend Loeb to race Hamilton’s Extreme E entry
Listen to this article

The signing of Loeb marks another major coup for the fledgling series founded by Formula E co-creator Alejandro Agag, with Hamilton and his ex-Mercedes Formula 1 teammate and fellow world champion Nico Rosberg both entering teams for XE.

Loeb also joins a high-profile initial driver line-up for the maiden five-round calendar that includes two-time WRC champion Carlos Sainz Sr, double DTM title winner Mattias Ekstrom and triple World Rallycross champion Johan Kristoffersson. The French driver, who will be 47 come the first event in Saudi Arabia, is also a race winner at World Touring Car, World RX and FIA GT level, and has extensive Dakar Rally experience.

“Joining team X44 is an opportunity for me to continue to do what I love, which is race, and I’m looking forward to competing in an electric vehicle," said Loeb. "I had the chance to drive the car recently and it is incredible.

“I am really impressed by what Lewis is doing in Formula 1 too, so to be able to work with him on this is an honour.”

Read Also:

Loeb has already driven the standardised ODYSSEY 21 machine, having taken part in a shakedown at the Chateau de Lastours in southern France in October. There, he tested the car alongside Sainz and current Mercedes grand prix driver Valtteri Bottas.

Although the presence of all three was meant to remain private, both Bottas and Loeb’s participation was made public in the following days. X44 has also revealed its female competitor as Dakar Rally regular and 2015 Spanish National All Terrain Rally Championship runner-up Cristina Gutierrez.

In 2017, she became the first Spanish female ever to finish the Dakar event - fifth out of the debutantes – and two years later moved up to the prototype class to record her best result of 26th – with Loeb third for Peugeot. Both X44 drivers have also recently tested the ODYSSEY on Donington Park off-road stages.

Hamilton said: “I’m delighted to welcome Sebastien and Cristina to X44. They are both incredible drivers and I’m looking forward to seeing what they’re going to do out there at each race.

“Cristina is an upcoming talent with a great future ahead of her, and Sebastien is a driver I have admired for so many years, so I’m so proud and excited to have them on board.”

X44 Livery

X44 Livery

Photo by: Lewis Hamilton

The ABT team also announced this week the signing of Claudia Hurtgen – the 1995 Austrian Touring Car champion and a class winner in the 24 Hours of Daytona and Le Mans – alongside Ekstrom. 

shares
comments

Related video

Driving the electric beast behind XE’s off-road eco-crusade
Previous article

Driving the electric beast behind XE’s off-road eco-crusade

Next article

HWA replaced by Hispano Suiza in Extreme E

HWA replaced by Hispano Suiza in Extreme E
Load comments
Why McLaren has taken its unprecedented off-road left turn Prime

Why McLaren has taken its unprecedented off-road left turn

McLaren will be in distinctly unfamiliar territory this weekend as it makes its Extreme E debut. But this rugged left turn serves as a means to an end to inspire a greater good

Extreme E
Feb 18, 2022
How XE's Arctic adventure gave a chilly reminder of the fixes to find Prime

How XE's Arctic adventure gave a chilly reminder of the fixes to find

Extreme E’s third round provided the very definition of extreme conditions in the Arctic Circle, and despite settling on a successful format and Andretti United taking a maiden win, there remains plenty of work to do with the spec cars that froze in action

Extreme E
Aug 30, 2021
Why McLaren’s surprise electric path can benefit everyone involved Prime

Why McLaren’s surprise electric path can benefit everyone involved

McLaren's announcement that it will enter the Extreme E series for electric SUVs next year came as something of a surprise. But it brings benefits that other championships it could seek to enter cannot, while providing a timely boost to a start-up that has had to cancel two of its South American rounds.

Extreme E
Jun 13, 2021
Why Extreme E's Senegal round hints at the series' true potential Prime

Why Extreme E's Senegal round hints at the series' true potential

Extreme E's second round on the sands of Senegal refined some the more clunky aspects of the series' debut event in Saudi Arabia. Even though its star-studded finale between Lewis Hamilton's X44 team and Rosberg X Racing proved anticlimactic, the pieces are in place for the series to only get better

Extreme E
Jun 1, 2021
How Extreme E exceeded expectations to pass its first major test Prime

How Extreme E exceeded expectations to pass its first major test

The racing may have lacked the explosive conclusion to Formula E's first race in 2014 and was not without its hiccups. But Extreme E's leap into the unknown appears to have paid off, delivering a spectacle quite unlike anything else

Extreme E
Apr 5, 2021
Extreme E: The team-by-team guide Prime

Extreme E: The team-by-team guide

The world’s newest motorsport discipline is set to go racing for the first time this weekend. Extreme E’s innovations and plans have raised some eyebrows, but it also provides an exciting list of competitors and teams for the inaugural campaign

Extreme E
Apr 2, 2021
How Extreme E’s charging solution could transform motorsport Prime

How Extreme E’s charging solution could transform motorsport

The new off-road SUV series aims to go boldly into the unknown on several fronts, but perhaps its most significant measure will involve the energy source powering its fleet of cars

Extreme E
Apr 1, 2021
How XE's star power puts Formula E under pressure Prime

How XE's star power puts Formula E under pressure

With the addition of Jenson Button's own team to join the involvement of fellow Formula 1 champions Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg in Extreme E's ranks, the new electric SUV series is brimming with star power to enable it to deliver on its promise

Extreme E
Jan 29, 2021