Extreme E announces male‑female driver partnership rule
Extreme E, the new motorsport formula with the laudable aim of highlighting areas of the globe already hard hit by climate change, has announced that all its teams must field a driver pairing of one male and one female.
The electric off-road race series, due to launch in January 2021, will feature two-lap races in which both driver and co-driver must complete one lap each behind the wheel of the Odyssey 21 electric SUV racing cars. All teams will field identical cars with matching tyres so the podium places will be determined by the skill and strategy of the driver pairings.
The five-race series is due to launch in Senegal in January 2021, followed by rounds in Saudi Arabia, Nepal, Greenland and Brazil with two month breaks between each.
Former F1 driver Gil de Ferran disembarking HMS Helena at the series's launch in London.
Why so long between race meetings? Well Extreme E is taking steps to reduce the carbon footprint of its globetrotting by recommissioning an ex-Royal Mail cargo carrier, the RMS Helena, to ship the cars around rather than fly them from race to race.
Extreme E’s many praiseworthy ambitions have some serious backing with Adrian Newey being one of its principal visionaries and a scientific steering committee of Oxbridge academics.