Extreme E with the Queen of Dakar - Jutta Kleinschmidt starts for ABT CUPRA XE: Jutta Kleinschmidt starts for ABT CUPRA XE in Extreme E. The first and so far only female winner of the legendary Dakar Rally shares the cockpit with Mattias Ekström with immediate effect and for the remaining three races of the season of the all-electric off-road series. "I'm really looking forward to this new challenge, to the preparation with the ABT team and of course to working with Mattias," says the German.
Extreme E with the Queen of Dakar
Kleinschmidt, who won the Dakar Rally in 2001, takes over the steering of the e-CUPRA ABT XE1 from Claudia Hürtgen. “For top performance at off-road events like the Extreme E, intensive preparation, including tests and rally participation, is required. Unfortunately, this high amount of time is currently not compatible with my professional activity at BMW, which I live with the same passion, ”says Hürtgen. “But a change also offers new opportunities for each of us - so I'm happy for the team that the Senegal constellation will last until the end of the season. I am very grateful for the experiences I was able to make in the Extreme-E family, and I wish ABT, CUPRA and Jutta all the best for the next races. "
Extreme E is well-known terrain for Jutta Kleinschmidt: In her role as championship driver and consultant, she attended the first two events and supported the organizers with her in-depth knowledge from 17 Dakar participations. In Senegal, she stepped in for Hürtgen at short notice, who had to be out due to illness, and impressed with a strong performance. "First I watched the series from the organizers' point of view, then I got a spontaneous assignment and now, together with Mattias, I am actually a permanent member of the driver family - I am very happy about the chance to compete at the highest level again" says Kleinschmidt.
Jutta Kleinschmidt starts for ABT CUPRA XE
Overall and team clothing are already in production, dates for the first meetings have been agreed, the countdown to the Arctic X Prix is on. "We had a really turbulent start to our Extreme E adventure. Hopefully the second half of the year will calm down and we will start fighting for trophies," says ABT CEO Thomas Biermaier. “My heartfelt thanks go to Claudia, who gave everything for our joint project from day one. We remain on friendly terms off the slopes, in the cockpit we are repositioning ourselves with Jutta. We are proud that she is now part of our team. "
While Kleinschmidt has her first appearance for the team next week at PR meetings for partner CUPRA, the sporting focus is entirely on the race in Greenland, which will be held on the last weekend in August. “Accidents in Saudi Arabia, a spontaneous driver change in Senegal - it's time we had a smooth weekend,” says Mattias Ekström. "We will work meticulously over the season so far, prepare more intensively than ever and try a new start in Greenland." In 2021, the Swede will be making his debut in a buggy in the 2022 Dakar Rally for Audi. “Jutta is the 'Queen of Dakar' and I'm still almost a rookie - having her on the team is also something special for me. I'm looking forward to the cooperation and your accumulated experience, which will be good for us in Extreme E. ”The Arctic X Prix around Kangerlussuaq will take place on August 28th and 29th.
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