Extreme E

Extreme E introduces doubleheader format for 2023

2 Mins read
Credit: Extreme E

In 2022, Extreme E conducted a doubleheader for the Island X Prix in Sardinia due to circumstances of the time, but series officials have taken a liking to having multiple races to the point where it will be implemented across all five rounds for 2023 for a total of ten races. The significantly revamped system was announced on Monday.

“To have a ten-race championship in Extreme E is a tantalising prospect for everyone on board and we believe the increased number of races will only enhance our series,” XE CEO Alejandro Agag stated. “We cannot wait for our opening races of the campaign in NEOM to get our biggest season yet underway for 2023.”

The new doubleheader format will condense racing activities that ordinarily take place across both days of the weekend into a single day, then doubled so that Saturday and Sunday have the same daily schedule. The traditional qualifying itinerary—single-car qualifying, a single heat race, a semi-final, and a Crazy Race—has been scrapped in favour of a two-round heat system with five cars per race. The first round of heats determines the starting order for the second; for example, odd-numbered finishers in the first Heat #1 and even-numbered in Heat #2 are assigned to the first heat of the second round, and vice versa. The winners of each heat are awarded a bonus point towards the championship.

Like in the old qualifying, a team earns Intermediate Classification points based on their performance in the heats, which are then used to determine who advances to which final race; the heat winner gets ten points, second gets eight, and so on, while those who fail to finish their heat will not receive any points. The top five in the Intermediate Classification go to the “Grand Final”, while the bottom of the order is relegated to the “Redemption Race”.

In the event of a tie, the team with the faster Continental Traction Challenge time has the advantage. While the Traction Challenge’s methodology remains the same (the best combined time of both drivers in a certain “Super Sector”), the best overall team gets just two points rather than five.

The points payout for the Grand Final and Redemption Race remains the same as under the previous format. The winner of the Grand Final is considered first for the race day and receives twenty-five points, while whoever wins the Redemption Race gets eight as they are classified in sixth.

GridPlay, a fan voting system, will once again be used to set the starting position for the Grand Final; if a team misses the Final, they can give their votes to a peer in said race. The Redemption Race’s start grid is based on Intermediate Classification, with sixth place receiving the first choice.

“We’ve continuously improved the racing spectacle since launching Extreme E, but for Season 3 we wanted to create something spectacular and we feel this new sporting format achieves that,” said series chief championship officer James Taylor. “At each round, there will be double the opportunity for points and podiums, meaning a lot more to play for at each race weekend, while drivers and teams will have to navigate that racing tightrope of risk and reward to ensure they achieve the maximum result.

“Having a ten-race championship should really close up those standings as the season progresses, meaning a thrilling Extreme E campaign should be in store for 2023 and we cannot wait for it to begin.”

The 2023 season will begin with the Desert X Prix on 11/12 March.

Credit: Extreme E
Credit: Extreme E
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