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Euro RX - You’re the daddy! Kobe Pauwels thanks his father after winning Euro RX3 title


An emotional Kobe Pauwels thanked his family – and in particularly his father, former FIA World Rallycross Championship driver Koen Pauwels – for their hard work, support and sacrifices that have helped the 17-year-old Belgian driver become the 2022 FIA European Rallycross Euro RX3 champion.

Having started his racing career in karting, becoming European champion in 2016 and the CIK-FIA Karting Academy Trophy vice-champion in 2019, Pauwels made his rallycross debut in the Belgium Cross Car Junior series three years ago. He won that and the European Cross Car Championship.

Gaining experience in RallyX Nordic in 2020, Pauwels contested Euro RX3 for the first time in 2021 and scored a maiden victory at Lohéac in France.

The promise he showed last year came to fruition in 2022, as he’s led the Euro RX3 standings since scoring victory at the opening round at Nyirád in Hungary in his Volland Racing Audi A1

He followed that win with a second-place finish at Höljes (Sweden) and then another victory in Hell (Norway) – all of which saw him arrive at the penultimate round of the Euro RX3 series in Montalegre with a healthy 20-point lead.

Pauwels was peerless in Portugal, winning both his semi-final race and the final from pole to win the Euro RX3 title with one round remaining.

“I don’t know what to say – I only know that childhood dreams do come true,” said Pauwels.

“This is a huge family effort and it’s unbelievable.

"If there is one guy that deserves this title, actually it’s my whole family but in particularly it’s my father.

“Since our racing journey began back in 2014, together he has only missed one race.

“We had to take a lot of decisions and we never really knew if they would pay off and now it finally did.

“Without him I wouldn’t be here. I wouldn’t have even raced.

“He is working twenty-four seven in the garage to just make sure we are here.

“This year the plan was to become champion, but you never know what’s in the box – but in the end we made it work and I think this is all because of my dad.”