Photo: Mustafa Quraishi (AP)
What do you get when two Indian racers want to start breaking some boundaries and having fun with racing? You get the Xtreme 1, or X1, Racing League.
The League was recently founded by Aditya Patel and Armaan Ebrahim and is intended to kick off in India next year and is founded on a series of pretty unique principles that we haven’t really seen in motorsport. X1 Racing League is structured as a competition between eight city-based franchise teams that include two cars and four drivers.00:00
Patel and Ebrahim are interested in showcasing not only upcoming racing talent, but also domestic talent. Of the four drivers on the team, one will be an international male driver, one an international female driver, one an Indian international driver, and one an Indian domestic driver. The international Indian driver is intended to have five or more years of experience to aid the domestic driver, who is likely going to be an upcoming driver looking to gain experience.
This series is a first in a lot of ways. We’ve never seen city-based teams before, and there’s no racing category in the world that requires men and women to compete on the same playing field, at least to my knowledge. That’s a pretty groundbreaking way to start pitting well-known racers against women and young drivers who may not be as recognizable a name. It’s a great way to showcase the skill of drivers against known reference points, instead of confining drivers to their own specific series.
Currently, the plan is to hold X1 Racing League’s events over four consecutive race weekends in the first part of 2019. They’re going to hold three races per day (which are capped at 45 minutes) on both Saturday and Sunday. They want to blend street racing with circuit events to keep things exciting. As Overdrivenotes, the circuit races will be held at Buddh International Circuit and MMRT, while the street races are planned for Hyderabad, Bangalore, Chandigarh, and Mumbai. The street courses haven’t been approved yet, but they’ve already been sent in for confirmation.
There are also talks to include a year-long domestic season composed of 12 races. That way, teams can score points all year long. And, in another neat twist, there’s going to be a Patron’s Seat, which means that the team owner can drive their car or ask someone else to do it.
The cars for the series are going to be custom-made—and while nothing has been released quite yet about what those cars will look like, it seems pretty likely that they’ll use the Indian-made JA Motorsport two-seater.
Drivers like Pippa Mann and Vitantonio Liuzzi have both expressed their interest in the X1 Racing League, and as more developments are made, it’s easy to imagine that even more big names might start getting involved.
In my humble opinion, this sounds kind of awesome. Ingenuity and thinking outside the box are traits that some of the big racing series lack, and it’s great to see that there are people out there who have big ideas and the motivation to put them in action.