Bakkerud victorious in Sweden
Norway’s Andreas Bakkerud achieved his first RallycrossRX SuperCar victory during round six of the FIA European Rallycross Championship in Holjes, Sweden last weekend.
Thanks to his win in the semi-final, Bakkerud claimed a front row slot in the final, joined by Mattias Ekstrom, whose victory in the first semi-final secured his place at the top of the starting grid.
Petter Solberg, Mattias Ekstrom and Bakkerud set the pace for the beginning of the race, with the three making impressive starts. Timmy Hansen was the first driver to head for the joker lap, breaking away from the competition followed by Daniel Holten and Henning Solberg. Ekstrom was the next driver to take his joker, returning to the main circuit behind Hansen.
The race saw Solberg push Bakkerud hard for lead position until he retired from the race with a technical problem on the third tour, leaving Bakkerud room to manoeuvre before taking his joker on lap four and unwittingly handing the lead to Hansen.
However Hansen also made a small error en route to the velodrome section which permitted Ekstrom to pass the Swedish driver on the fast downhill lose section of the Holjes circuit, in front of a record 30,000 strong crowd.
The trio completed the final two laps nose to tail to fill the podium with Bakkerud picking up his first win in the SuperCar category after clinching the FIA European Champion title in 2012 in the Super1600 support class. Henning Solberg had a quiet run to fourth position while Daniel Holten finished fifth having been delayed with a technical issue.
“I was pushing so hard all race, I’m so proud of myself and the whole team. We have worked really hard for this, and to do it in front of all my supporters is amazing,” said Bakkerud.
Ulrik Linnemann claimed his second RallycrossRX Super1600 win of the season. The Dane took the joker lap while running in second position, allowing fellow front row starter Reinis Nittis to lead at the front. Nitiss led until the final lap, when he too took his joker, allowing Linnemann to take the lead and the victory, ahead of Nitiss and Russian driver Vadim Makarov.
Eric Faren and Ildar Rakhmatullin fought hard for fourth place with Faren coming out on top. Swedish driver Kevin Eriksson was removed from contention after spinning into the turn one gravel trap.
Irish driver Derek Tohill won TouringCar for the second time this season, extending his championship lead in the process. Tohill took maximum points from Sweden, finishing top of the intermediate classification, winning both his semi-final and final.
Swedish driver Daniel Lundh was Tohill’s closest challenger finishing second, with Roman Castoral taking third place. Tom Daniel Tanevik earned a career best fourth place, with championship contender Robin Larsson who had been slowed by a spin and then a puncture taking fifth,Torleif Lona finished sixth.
The JRX category was won by Kevin Hansen, who took his first win of the season at his home event, joined on the podium by William Nilsson and Magda Andersson.
The FIA European Rallycross Championship will resume on September 1st in Lohéac, France, and see Sébastien Loeb compete in the event. The Championship will then travel to Greinback, Austria (15th September) and conclude in Buxtehude, Germany, 22nd September.