Not much home comfort for Solberg
Not much home comfort for Solberg
Reigning FIA World Rallycross Champion Petter Solberg finished fourth on his home round of the series in Norway today.
The triple FIA World Champion remains in the thick of the fight for a third successive title, but he admits his weekend in Hell was a toughie.
“I love to come home,” said Solberg, “the fans here are some of the best in the world and it’s fantastic to fight in front of them. But, I must admit, I always struggled with this track. This has been by far the toughest weekend I have had in this championship. We tried everything we could without risking too much, but we couldn’t find one answer to where the speed was going. We knew where we had to be and where we were losing the time, but not exactly why. So frustrating!
“I want to say congratulations to my countryman [Andreas] Bakkerud. He took a well-deserved win after the perfect weekend – the first time anybody did this in World RX.”
“The important thing was to make the final, which we did. But coming from the back like that it’s always really tough, you’re relying a little bit on what the guys ahead are doing. The positive for me is that we have worked really, really hard, we have dug deep as a team here and made a result possible. [Mattias] Ekström was just ahead of me in the final, so together we are pulling away from the rest of the guys – that’s good, but I still want to be first!”
“Now we look forward to the next one, which is another huge event for me and for the team – it’s the PSRX team’s home event in Sweden.”
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The PSRX race weekend
Q1 – 4th (position in the standings after qualifying one races)
Great start from Petter, quickest into the first corner. Hunted by Loeb for much of the race, but he kept the Frenchman behind.
Q2 – 5th
Straight to the joker lap to get the better of Ekström. Championship rivals drove without taking any chances and Ekström followed Petter across the line.
Q3 – 5th
Again Petter was quickest to the first corner and again he stayed ahead of Ekström – and Johan Kristoffersson who was in the hunt this time – with a clever and quick drive (quickest time of the day so far…) from the PSRX star.
Q4 – 2nd
Petter set his sights on first or second quickest time to go to the semis in the top four positions. He went straight to the joker lap, drove beautifully and achieved his target.
Semi-final – 3rd
Petter goes straight to the joker lap and finishes third to make the final.
Final – 4th
Starts from the back of the grid, comes off the joker lap fifth and makes up one place to finish fourth.
1 Andreas Bakkerud 3m58.641s
2 Timmy Hansen 3m59.716s
3 Mattias Ekström 4m01.120s
4 Petter Solberg 4m01.794s
5 Sébastien Loeb 4m03.152s
6 Timur Timerzyanov 4m05.862s
Drivers’ championship positions:
1 Ekström 125pts
2 Solberg 120pts
3 Johan Kristoffersson 83pts
4 Loeb 82pts
5 Bakkerud 81pts
6 Toomas Heikkinen 70pts
Next time out World RX of Sweden (July 02/03)
It might be 19 days before we arrive at the Holjes Motorstadion, but if you look closely, you can probably see the first tent being erected right about now. It’s that time of year: the mid-summer festivals are coming and we can’t wait to get to Sweden for this one. Petter missed the podium last year, but nobody was faster around the track than the three-time FIA World Champion. Let’s see what he can do at his half-home race this time.
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Per-Espen Lochen PR/Media Manager
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