Brazilian professional racing driver and team owner Gil de Ferran and entrepreneur Alejandro Agag officially launched the new Extreme E all-electric racing series. De Ferran will serve as the Chairman of Extreme E; Agag is founder and CEO of Formula E.
Due to commence in January 2021, the off-road racing action will be staged in five areas of outstanding natural beauty currently under threat from climate change: the Arctic, the Himalayas, Sahara desert, the Amazon rainforest and islands in the Indian Ocean.
The series will be operated in association with Formula E and use a traditional round-robin format with two groups of six teams—with the top-four progressing to the knock-out stage and each driver going head-to-head to earn a place in the final. The off-road stages will be around 6-10km in length with a series of virtual gates to be navigated through by drivers in a mixture of extreme heat and humidity, high altitude and sub-zero temperatures.
Bucking the trend for broadcasters, the Extreme E aims to take of the form of a ‘docu-sport’ TV series—produced by Academy Award-winning filmmaker and new Artistic Director of Extreme E, Fisher Stevens.
Launched on board the former Royal Mail Ship St. Helena beside Tower Bridge in London, Extreme E reiterated its committed to being carbon neutral, alongside implementing ongoing legacy initiatives at each destination to help restore and re-build damaged ecosystems already impacted by climate change. On board the boat during the launch, British explorer and environmentalist David de Rothschild announced he will take the position of Chief Explorer of Extreme E and lead the mission to take electric racing to some of the world’s most remote locations.
Already fully-funded, the venture has secured the backing of Continental Tires as a founding partner and official tire supplier and Brazilian company CBMM as niobium supplier, which will feature in the chassis of the all-electric SUVs.