The new Extreme E electric off-road series has revealed the first of its two ‘joker drivers’ – two-time DTM champion Timo Scheider, who will support Extreme E in myriad sporting projects.
Alongside his primary responsibility to be available to jump into any one of the series’ ODYSSEY 21s SUVs at a moment’s notice, Scheider will also contribute to the design of Extreme E race courses at each of its locations.
The German has a varied motorsport background, having raced everything from single-seaters to touring cars and rallycross. He won back-to-back DTM titles in 2008 and 2009; a 24 Hours of Le Mans podium in 2010; claimed victories at the 24 Hours of Spa and the Nurburgring; and World Rallycross podiums in 2017 and 2020.
The ability to adapt his driving style to suit different terrains, car requirements and weather conditions will prove vital in his new role with the championship.
James Taylor, Extreme E chief championship officer, said: “It’s fantastic to have Timo [Scheider] on the team. He has a huge amount of knowledge – invaluable experience working across so many motorsport disciplines on (a variety of) terrains and conditions – so he was a natural choice to help design the courses we’ll be racing on.”
Said Scheider: “It’s a pretty new experience for me, but I was super excited about the Extreme E team and the challenge to design a course in the middle of nowhere. I really enjoyed the first recce in Saudi Arabia and designing a course in the desert. There are so many things to consider, but the course is going to provide incredible racing.
“I’m also looking forward to getting behind the wheel of the ODYSSEY 21 and being the first to drive the official Extreme E course in just a few weeks’ time. It’ll be a moment in history.
“The ‘joker driver’ role is pretty cool, too,” he added, “and I’m delighted to be available for all the teams, to fulfill a driver role should it be required.
Extreme E’s second joker driver will be revealed later this week. The series’ inaugural X Prix takes from place April 3-4 in AlUla, Saudi Arabia.