X44 and Andretti United win Semi Finals, as Veloce and ABT CUPRA knocked out

KANGERLUSSUAQ, GREENLAND - AUGUST 29: Emma Gilmour (NZL)/Stephane Sarrazin (FRA), Veloce Racing, Laia Sanz/Carlos Sainz (ESP), Acciona | Sainz XE Team, and Cristina Gutierrez (ESP)/Sebastien Loeb (FRA), X44, at the start during the Arctic X-Prix at Kangerlussuaq on August 29, 2021 in Kangerlussuaq, Greenland. (Photo by Sam Bloxham / LAT Images)
© Sam Bloxham

X44 and Andretti United both claimed victory in a pair of dramatic semi-finals at the Artic X Prix, Extreme E season one round three in Greenland.

Emma Gilmour initially led semi-final one for Veloce Racing chased by Carlos Sainz for the ACCONIA | SAINZ squad and X44’s Cristina Gutierrez. All three drivers used the Hyperdrive early on, before the hairpin, with Sainz making a move on the inside for the lead. Gilmour made a small error in a narrow, inclined section but held position, while Sainz pulled away up front. Before the switch zone, Gilmour also pulled a gap on Gutierrez and held a four second margin before the driver swap, Sainz reaching the switch zone with a 13 second advantage. Having taken the controls, X44’s Sebastien Loeb began to close on Veloce’s Stephane Sarrazin on the second 8.6 kilometre lap, and made a move for track position by the lake section, almost dipping a wheel of the X44 ODYSSEY 21 E-SUV into the water.

While Sarrazin pushed hard in pursuit, Loeb closed on ACCONIA | SAINZ driver Laia Sanz and made a move for the lead using the Hyperdrive before the rocky section of the course. Behind the new leader, Sarrazin tried a new route and did pass Sanz, but broke the car’s suspension and was forced to drag it to the finish line.

At the start of semi-final two, Rosberg X Racing’s Johan Kristoffersson executed a switch-back overtake on Andretti United’s Timmy Hansen, but Kristoffersson clipped a way gate marker and would receive a 10 second penalty post-race. He also got passed by Hansen on track in the river bed section. Kristoffersson then re-took the position under braking entering the switch zone, before Molly Taylor took over the team’s ODYSSEY 21.

Taylor ran just ahead of Andretti United’s Catie Munnings at the start of lap two. Munnings needed to only finish within 10 seconds of Taylor to take the race win with the RXR penalty applied, but Munnings overtook Taylor on track to win the race outright. The ABT CUPRA team broke a driveshaft at the start of the race meaning Jutta Kleinschmidt and Mattias Ekstrom were unable to challenge in the battle for the win.

X44, Andretti United, ACCONIA | SAINZ and Rosberg X Racing make it through to the final, and will be joined by the winner of the Crazy Race.