Ekstrom Rocks Swedish Rallycross Foes
HOLJES, Sweden – Double DTM champion Mattias Ekstrom has clinched his first-ever FIA World Rallycross Championship victory Sunday after a flawless drive in the Audi S1 Supercar at the fifth round of the World Championship presented by Monster Energy.
Ekstrom is the fifth different winner and fourth different manufacturer to win in this year’s World RX. The EKS RX Team driver is also the first this season to score maximum points after being placed highest in the intermediate classifications and winning both the semi-final and final. Norway’s Andreas Bakkerud and Petter Solberg were second and third, despite both drivers incurring punctures in a dramatic final race.
A record-breaking crowd of 34,900 spectators attended the legendary Volkswagen World RX of Sweden this weekend which is arguably the best known rallycross event in the world. Thousands of vehicles lined the Varmland forest surrounding the circuit as a sell-out crowd descended on Holjes to watch 107 races across the Supercar, Super1600, TouringCar and supporting RX Lites Cup.
“If I could write a book and create my dream story I would pretty much write what happened here in Holjes today. This is the best story of my life,” said Ekstrom, who finished runner-up in Sweden last year. “In December we didn’t have anything in terms of a rallycross team and we have been late to enter this year but everything has fallen into place. Our ultimate goal is to become World Champions but obviously because of my full-time career in DTM right now that is difficult, but I could definitely be part of a World Championship winning team as the team boss. I’ve never actually been to a FIA prizegiving and I would certainly love to do that.”
Ford Olsbergs MSE successfully extended its lead at the top of the team standings after team-mates Andreas Bakkerud and Reinis Nitiss finished second and fourth in their Ford Fiesta Supercars. Bakkerud had a troubled day yesterday but a top three time in today’s opening heat secured the Norwegian a place in the semi-finals. Bakkerud finished second to Sebastian Ekriksson in his semi and an action-packed final saw the Ford Olsbergs MSE driver take the runner-up spot.