Extreme E

Timmy Hansen: “After Q1, this kind of result really felt a long way off”

3 Mins read
Credit: Charly Lopez

The Andretti United team was the first team to win the Crazy Race on Sunday, and from there they booked themselves a position in the final, with the driver duo of Timmy Hansen and Catie Munnings managing then to take home a solid second place in the first-ever Extreme E race in Saudi Arabia.

Ahead of the final, the team were the solid favourites in the GridPlay, which is a voting system the fans back home can use to vote for their favourite pairing and if you win that, you’re the first team to select the grid position in the final.

Hansen, the 2019 FIA World Rallycross Champion, was the quickest off the line but he lost out to Rosberg X Racing´s Johan Kristoffersson in turn two and was slowed down by the dust, the duo were just a bit over twenty-three seconds behind the winning pair at RXR as Munnings took the car over the finish-linel.

Hansen is really delighted to make it this far, he admitts his team-mate showed some brilliant performance yesterday as she managed to bring home the car over the line despite having a puncture and even clocked in some solid time compared to their other rivals.

“This feels amazing. After Q1, this kind of result really felt a long way off. What a performance by Catie in Qualifying to keep the car on-track with the puncture,” Hansen said. “She brought our ODYSSEY 21 home and with a good time, too. That was a key moment for us this weekend. We were still the underdogs, but it felt like it all came together in the Crazy Race, which was a ‘must-win’.

“I think GridPlay was very important for us in the Final. That allowed us to choose our starting position and from there, I got way more traction than the others and could pull a gap straightaway. Obviously I’m a bit disappointed that we couldn’t keep the lead, but Johan [Kristoffersson] pulled a mega move into the chicane so congratulations to Rosberg X Racing. I’m still really happy to finish second in the first-ever Extreme E event. Catie and the whole team did a fantastic job throughout.

“Senegal next time out will be a completely different proposition, and almost like starting from zero again. With so many high-profile teams and drivers, we will have to be on our toes and work even harder. Massive congratulations to Alejandro Agag and the entire Extreme E organisation; to pull this idea off at such a high level is astonishing. It has exceeded any expectations that I had, and I’m excited to see where this championship will take off to. I think Extreme E has an incredibly bright future.”

Catie Munnings: “I’m super happy with the start to the season”

Credit: Colin McMaster

Munnings said on the post-race interview she was lost on words, she was so emotional to have managed to come this far over the weekend, she admitts it was all thanks to her team-mate Hansen who did an awesome start in both the Crazy Race and the final.

She also tells her first Extreme E podium finish is a massive moment of her career and this one will be remembered forever, but for the upcoming Ocean X Prix in Senegal, she knows they have to improve a bit so they can be challeging in the qualifying sessions.

“I just don’t have the words – I’m smiling so much! Timmy [Hansen] is my absolute hero, just a legend. His starts today have been incredible, which has made my job easy and all about bringing it home. With the puncture back at the beginning of Qualifying, who would have thought we would be here in second place now? The hard work paid off and we managed to turn our weekend around,” Munnings said.

“Extreme E offers an amazing platform for female drivers, and it’s super cool to be racing against such fast girls. It’s been really nice to see everyone coming together, encouraging each other and creating a competitive environment, and all of us – men and women alike – have been learning on the job and having a great time while doing it.”

“I’m super happy with the start to the season. This is a massive moment for my career and one I will remember forever. It’s been such a journey just to get to this point with a big build-up and no-one really knowing what to expect, so to finish with a great result makes it even more special. We know we can be faster, too, so we’ll get our heads down now and come back stronger in Senegal!”

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