Molly Taylor beams with pride at having raced and won Extreme E Desert X Prix- catch-up interview post racing

Molly Taylor beams with pride at having raced and won Extreme E Desert X Prix- catch-up interview post racing

Molly Taylor beams with pride having raced and won the opening Round of Extreme E – Desert X Prix with driver Johan Kristofferson for Rosberg X Racing Team on April 3-4. Molly is not just smiling on standing top of the podium, but super excited on what the Series delivered in terms of profiling the world’s best Off Road drivers and Team personal to action sustainable racing for the future.

Rosberg X Racing shakedown Extreme E Desert X Prix Photo Credit: Rosberg X Racing.

For Molly, racing The Electric Odyssey Series has been such an opportunity in the waiting, from being asked by Nico Rosberg to race for his Team, to being part of pitching all electric cars going all out for the win, to elevating the status of female drivers on a par with their Team’s male drivers.

Molly: ‘It was a pretty incredible weekend! To be part of something so revolutionary in Motorsport is so exciting, using sport in such a positive way in regard to sustainability, climate change and equality. And of course, the racing was so new, we didn’t know what the cars would be like racing, what the track would be like…it was so amazing to part of the whole experience’.

With only limited time together as a Team testing 2x before actual race at AlUla, Saudi Arabia, performances by Molly, Johan and Team crew were exceptional. Remaining in synch with job at hand, yet adaptable enough on track to make every move, push and switch-back count, confirmed the sincerity of Molly and Team to stay focused on achieving goals.

Molly: ‘We have incredible resource of experience within the Team- Johan Kristofferson is 3x World Rally Champion, Nico Rosberg is F1 World Champion- such combination of skills and attitude on what the Series represents means we are all there for the same reasons’.

Given level playing field for all 9 Teams on grid, from Qualifying sessions, to semi-final, through to Final, Molly places the actual behind the wheel moments as the most ‘peaceful place to be‘. Molly: ‘Qualifying was really the first time I hit the track at speed when it counted. With so much anticipation, build-up in the tests, then actual arrival at base on the Series ship St Helena, by the time I jumped in the car it was the most tranquil, quiet time while racing. It was the first time I’ve experienced that serenity while driving’.

Molly Taylor and Johan Kristoffersson racing for Rosberg X Racing. Photo Credit: Rosberg X Racing.

Even with Molly’s knowledge of racing Rally, accumulating numerous victories including 2016 Australia Rally Champion, transition of skills from all fuel injected Rally car, to all electric Odyssey 21 SUV requires unknown quantity of adaptability under pressure. For sure, Molly admits racing ‘the beast’ was outside her comfort zone, new, and ‘pretty wild’ to manage on track at speed.

Molly: ‘Having the ability to adapt to racing the car which was so different to what I’m used to, was key. Coming from Rally background- being able to feel the car, feel the grit, have that level of car control – these are basics that you need for Rally. Even though the car and surface was different, I was able to bring my own skills to racing’. 

If questions were raised on- how would racing all electric vehicles provide fan experience that traditional Motorsport action has netted to viewers for decades- answers appeared from get go on screens. The level of intensity during racing was no more evident on track than between drivers whose force to be reckoned with rested on their own illustrious racing careers.

Molly: ‘All electric racing was exciting, it held all the unpredictable factors of Motorsport racing along with so many different aspects which made it all so special to be a part of. From the hydrogen powered battery, to no carbon emissions, to the founder Alejandro Agag premise that racing needs to be extreme- all represented what mobility will be like in the future’.

Taken in broader context, Molly takes utmost satisfaction on having opportunity to elevate the status of female drivers on equal footing as their male counterparts. Molly: ‘It is incredible that we have been given this opportunity to race against the drivers we have in the Series. A total of 12 World Titles, Rally idols, and numerous Championship wins makes for amazing depth of experience within male drivers. To be able to race in the Series- gives us a platform to develop and prove we are able to compete on equal footing as men- with support and mentors around us’.

Rosberg X Racing Desert X Prix win with Molly Taylor and Johan Kristofferson.

If racing brings out the best in Molly Taylor, Rosberg X Racing mantra ‘Drive for Purpose’ resonates deeply with the Australian who marvels at nature’s bounty as well as embraces opportunities to mitigate effects of climate change. Such well thought out plans on showcasing Australia’s beautiful colours of the environment on Molly’s bespoke helmet, speak volumes on Molly’s own sense of what matters – personally and professionally.

Molly: ‘To see, first-hand the effects of climate change at a beach on the coast of the Red Sea, to be on the ground, listening to speakers on problems that marine life face for survival completes our goal of Drive for Purpose’ It’s not just racing and all for show, with Rosberg X Racing we will also be doing our own campaigns, helping and providing resources to local initiatives to further their development’.

Ultimately my passion is Motorsport, but to be able to pursue something purely because it is something you enjoy doing and then to be able to use that on something which is bigger than yourself, is far more beneficial – to be part of a larger purpose. We are racing and we want to win, but we are also making a difference’.

While Molly takes the opportunity to race Extreme E with Rosberg X Racing as next step along career path, the experience transmits a much broader sense of reasoning on how the vivacious driver wants to further develop her own set of beliefs, values and ethics which enrich her life and those generations to come. Such mental fortitude represents Molly’s individual take on what racing is all about for her as a professional driver and person.

Words: Sharon Cox.

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