Extreme E: Jamie Chadwick to race in climate change series

By Niamh LewisBBC Sport
Extreme E car
Extreme E will take place in the most remote corners of the planet

Williams development driver Jamie Chadwick is one of three women signed up to drive in Extreme E, which kicks off in Greenland in 2021.

Chadwick joins fellow Briton Katherine Legge and touring car driver Mikaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky.

Extreme E - Formula E's sister series - aims to highlight climate change in five remote locations as 12 cars go head-to-head in electric SUVs.

"Racing in incredible locations, raising awareness for climate change... what's not to love," said Chadwick.

The 21-year-old Briton who won the inaugural W Series championship in August, is one of the first female drivers to compete in a top-level racing series following the W Series.

Fellow W Series racer Alice Powell secured a drive with Heinricher Racing in the IMSA sportscar championship last month.

Chadwick added: "As part of the generation who are needing to be increasingly more aware of our environment, and having grown up in the countryside in England, for me it is more relevant than ever to be raising awareness. It really is a win-win."

Further names in the driver programme include world rally champion Sebastian Ogier, world rallycross drivers Andreas Bakkerud, Timo Scheider, and Kevin and Timmy Hansen will join Sacha Prost, and Formula E drivers Lucas di Grassi, and Andre Lotterer.

Formula E and Extreme E founder Alejandro Agag, said: "This world-class list of drivers, representing the very best male and female talent from multiple disciplines across top-tier motorsport, illustrates Extreme E's serious sporting credentials."

Teams will have the autonomy to select their own drivers, but organisers will recommend those from its driver programme.

Alongside racing, environmental experts from Cambridge University will join Extreme E, to conduct research and restore areas affected by climate change. Locations include the Arctic, the Himalayas, desert terrain, the Amazon rainforest and an island in the Indian Ocean.

Russell Glacier, in South West Greenland, will host the first Extreme E race in February 2021
Russell Glacier in Greenland will host the first Extreme E race in February 2021

What is Extreme E?

The environmentally focused racing series has secured its first location at the Russell Glacier, in south-west Greenland starting in February 2021.

In order to reach the five locations, the series will have a 'floating paddock' which is estimated to reduce freight emissions by two-thirds compared with air travel.

The former Royal Mail cargo ship RMS St Helena will undergo renovations, and will host drivers, teams and their garages, as well as having a team of environmental experts on-board to study the environmental impact of climate change in each region.

Extreme E paddock on a boat
The RMS St Helena will become a "floating paddock" for Extreme E

Drivers will race head-to-head over three days in each location, with routes designed within a 10km radius with natural obstacles in fully electric SUVs, which are capable of reaching 0-62mph in 4.5 seconds.

As part of the agreement, race organisers must ensure that assessments are carried out with a local third party to safeguard the environment and the social impact.

Testing begins in mid-2020, with the series starting in Greenland in February 2021.