Larsson and JC Raceteknik score Nordic victory and head for France
Swedish driver Robin Larsson claimed his second win of the RallyX Nordic season at Kouvola in Finland to keep his and JC Raceteknik’s title hopes alive, while the team heads to Loheac in France this weekend to continue fighting for the European Championship crown.
The sixth and penultimate round of the RallyX Nordic series was held at former World Championship venue Kouvola. Initially struggling with finding a rhythem on the challenging circuit, Larsson and the team changed the Audi S1 Supercar's setup and he qualified second in the Intermediate Classification.
That gave him pole for the second semi-final, where he claimed victory, before also leading the final from the front to take his second win of the year and close the gap to the championship leader to just four points. Supercar team mate Mats Ohman set good lap times in qualifying but just missed out on a place in the final by finishing fourth in a close semi-final race.
Supercar Lites driver Jimmie Walfridson had a strong event in the single-make category. He qualified fifth in the Intermediate Classification, was second in his semi-final and finished fourth in the final. Championship leader Ben-Philip Gundersen was top qualifier and then won his semi-final, but despite finishing third in the final, was disqualified for an on-track incident, dropping him to sixth. Fellow Norwegian Sondre Evjen had an up and down weekend, he rolled his car in one of the qualifying sessions but thanks to the work of the JC Raceteknik mechanics he remained in the event, but lost positions at the start of the semi-final and didn’t make it into the final.
12-year-old JC Raceteknik Juniorteam driver Alex Gustafsson had a busy weekend in Finland at Hyvinkaa where he competed in the Northern European Zone (NEZ) and the Finnish Championship (FinRX). In NEZ he finished fourth and in FinRX he finished second in the Xtreme Junior class.
JC Raceteknik now turns it’s attentions to this weekend’s event at Loheac, running cars in both Euro RX Supercar and the RX2 International Series (August 31 – September 1). The final round of RallyX Nordic will take place at Tierp, Sweden (September 21-22).
Find full results and championship standings here.
Joel Christoffersson, Team Principal:
“It was a fighting weekend for all of us from start to finish with Robin in Supercar. We didn’t get it together at all on Saturday, we struggled with the starts and speed on the track. But we worked hard though Sunday and before Q4 we tried a brand-new setup that worked very well. It gave us a good feeling into the finals, where Robin did a brilliant job and controlled the race from start to finish.
In Supercar Lites we generally had a good weekend until the semi-finals. Had it not been for Jimmie's DNF in Q1 and Sondre's roll in Q4 we would have had the cars further up the grid. In the final, there was some carnage on lap one. Ben-Philip went wide and then struggled to get back, but was he a little too hard and lost third place after a black flag. Jimmie was hit by the collision, but still struggled for good and came in fourth. After the weekend we have closed up the championship in Supercar and also in Lites it looks good. We can’t wait to fight for the championships at Tierp. Now we’re straight back to racing this weekend at Loheac where we are chasing our fourth win in five events in Supercar with Robin.”
Supercar: Robin Larsson (SWE) :
“It's really nice to take victory and fight back after being second in Flisa. We have had a hard weekend and the speed was not where we wanted it to be in the beginning. Before Q4, the team took a chance with the car's setup and made a new big change. It turned out to be a winning move, and we also got a lot of good information that we can use for competitions in the future. In the championship, the focus has been to pick championship points on the leader and this weekend we were one point away from maximum. Now be able to challenge for the victory - the finals in Tierp will be interesting. Now we’re fully focused on trying to win at Loheac this weekend.”
Supercar: Mats Ohman (SWE) :
“I think it was a good event in Kouvola. It’s noticeable that I’m getting to know the car more and more every time. The last two races went very well. I took the starts and was then able to run freely. It's rare I've been able to do this this year, and that's when my driving works best. So I really pushed and won both of those heats. But unfortunately, in the semi-finals the car did not get away at the start. I got off the line in fourth and then simply could not climb up to a second place. It feels disappointing because I think the speed was there to be in the final. But, I have to take revenge in the next event. Now it’s be time to go back home and work on further developing the car. I drive it in a completely different way to the other drivers, so more work is needed with stuff like that. And as always: thank you to everyone involved who helps me, without them it would never work.”
Supercar Lites: Ben-Philip Gundersen (NOR) :
“The pace on the track has been there, but from the beginning, the starts were not as good. We had some minor problems with the suspension, among other things, but the mechanics got it sorted. Good results in qualifying gave us pole position in the semi-finals, where there was good speed and I won. Into the final I was a little late at the start and was passed by a driver on the outside. I chose to Joker early and tried to climb places. On the third lap, a small gap opened. I thought it was bigger than it was and it resulted in a clash with my teammate Jimmie. That wasn't the intention, but I just went in too hot. The crash took a hard time for Jimmie and it feels very shame. I got a black flag, but despite that I take good points and lead the championship with twelve important points before the final round. ”
Supercar Lites: Jimmie Walfridson (SWE) :
“It was a good weekend for me in Kouvola. Unfortunately, I got a DNF in Q1 which made it difficult to get the points needed. The pace has been there and my tactics in the semi-finals were good, where I was second out of the first turn and kept the position to the finish. In the final I ended up behind a driver who had technical problems. I didn’t hear when my spotter asked me to take the joker, so stayed behind him for two corners which cost time. But I made it to the final which was the goal and I'm happy with the weekend. "
Supercar Lites: Sondre Evjen (NOR) :
“I had good pace all weekend, but with bad luck in the first corner and a few incidents. In Q4 the car became difficult to drive and when I rubbed the curb a little too much I rolled. It gave me a tough start in the semi-finals. I came out of the third corner in sixth, and stayed there fighting in traffic. Nevertheless, I really want to thank my mechanics and the team that managed to get the car ready to go after the roll – they did a very good job.”
Xtreme Junior: Alex Gustafsson (SWE):
“This second place feels great! On Saturday we raced in NEZ, and it was good practice for the for the FinRX race, so in Q1 on Sunday today, I had already had good momentum on track. We had some problems with the starts, but I still took one heat victory. I was third going into the final, but didn’t really get the start I wanted. I drove hard and got up to second, but since the winner was not registered for the entire series, I got maximum points. I will give everything in the last race of the season. I would also like to say a big thank you to the race organiser, who brought forward the race time for Xtreme Junior. It was my first day of school the next morning, so I had to race in the final before flying back home to Sweden."