May 28, 2015

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) Nelson Piquet Jr. will skip the X Games to compete in Formula E, where he's a championship contender in the new fully electric racing series.

Andreas Bakkerud will replace Piquet in the SH Racing Ford Fiesta at next weekend's X Games in Austin, Texas.

Piquet is leading the Formula E standings but is in a four-way battle with three races left. He'll compete June 6 in Moscow instead of participating in the X Games, where he won a bronze medal last year.

''RallyCross has been in my heart since I've drove it for the first time,'' said Piquet. ''A few months ago I took another challenge, competing in Formula E and right now we have a chance to win the championship. I'll be in Moscow thinking about those amazing jumps and all those battles, but I'll also be trying to win the first ever Formula E championship.''

SH Global RallyCross team owner James Sullivan said allowing Piquet to miss the X Games won't affect the RallyCross championship.

''We've got an opportunity here to get behind Nelson and help give him the chance to do something special in going after the inaugural Formula E championship,'' Sullivan said.

Bakkerud is an experienced RallyCross driver who is third in the FIA World RallyCross Championship Super Car category.

''I have been in RallyCross my whole career,'' said Bakkerud, who spotted for Piquet at the X Games in Barbados last year. ''I am proud to be able to compete with SH RallyCross and am honored to be able to step in for Nelson at the X Games.''

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