Robin Larsson and JC Raceteknik win European Rallycross Championship
Swedish rallycross team JC Raceteknik enjoyed triple success at one of the biggest rallycross events in the World, at Loheac in France, in front of 75,000 spectators.
Not only did Robin Larsson win his fourth FIA European Rallycross Championship round of the season, but the victory secured the Euro RX Supercar title with a round to spare. Also at Loheac, the team’s RX2 International Series driver Ben-Philip Gundersen won the single-make final.
The Euro RX Championship title, one of the biggest prizes in the sport of rallycross, comes two years after the Joel Christoffersson-owned team scored its first ever Euro RX Supercar victory, also at Loheac. The team worked hard through the French event, battling in qualifying before Larsson won his semi-final and the final to take the win.
On the same afternoon, Norwegian Ben-Philip Gundersen won the RX2 category after a close fight with championship leader Oliver Eriksson in the final, and climbed to third in the standings, just 14 points behind second with one round remaining in South Africa.
X Games Snowcross Gold Medallist Petter Nårsa joined the RX2 series for the first time with JC Raceteknik in his debut rallycross season, in which he has been racing in RallyX Nordic. With ever-improving pace on track, Nårsa qualified for the semi-finals ahead of more experienced racers but finished sixth after a puncture.
Find full results and championship standings here.
The next Euro RX round will be in just two weeks in Riga (September 14-15), while the RX2 International Series will end in Cape Town (November 9-10).
Joel Christoffersson, Team Principal:
“It was an absolutely fantastic weekend for us here. That Robin could secure the European Championship already this weekend, I stood with goose bumps all over my body and with tears in my eyes. Winning the European Championship is something we at JC Raceteknik have been fighting for for many years and most of the team have been with us since the start. So to have done this together is brilliant. I am so proud of everyone for their hard work. It’s the first year for us with Robin and it’s been an explosive collaboration, he really deserved this result. I want to thank all of our sponsors, without them it would never have been possible. Also thanks to EKS and Mattias Ekström for all of the support.
That we took a double victory with Robin and Ben-Philip is really something we could only dream of doing again after Holjes. Ben-Philip drove an incredibly good final and he has climbed in the championship. We must not forget that we have two championships left to go this year, RX2 and RallyX Nordic. We will celebrate a little now, but already tonight we pack the truck and head of the next event.
Having Petter Nårsa in the team this weekend has been great fun. We have worked together a bit in RallyX Nordic this season, so it was good fun to bring him here. He has had a good improvement curve and I can see great potential in him. The competition is tough in RX2 and Loheac is a difficult track to learn, so to get to the semi-final for the first time, we are happy. We hope to continue to cooperate with Petter in the future.”
Supercar: Robin Larsson (SWE) :
“This feels so nice that it's finally settled. The European Championship season has flowed very well for me and it feels great to be able to get revenge after my season in the World Championship last year. The weekend was a little difficult in the beginning with bad starts and small mistakes on my part. I was a little off the pace for a while and had a hard time keeping up. But, we dug in, turned it around and made a good semi and final. It feels great to be on the top of the podium here in France.
JC Raceteknik is a good bunch of guys who have run the car brilliantly all season, so I was able to just focus on driving and getting good results. Thank you to Joel, Mats and Ola who have been involved in this, and also working hard to get these cars to start with. Our Audi S1 Supercars have been a big key in being this fast. Thanks also to Dad (Lars Larsson), the rest of the gang and all of the sponsors who make this possible. Of course we should celebrate a little now, but then it will be time to refocus before Tierp and try to take the championship title in RallyX Nordic as well. After the victory in Finland, I'm really pumped for the last round."
Supercar Lites: Ben-Philip Gundersen (NOR) :
“Things have been very smooth all weekend and I think we ran the whole event very well. The first qualifying races were difficult because I started on the outside but we managed to stay calm and collect points. Q3 was the breakthrough for me, with a fast start and the fastest time. Together with the mechanics we had a plan for the whole weekend and made small changes to the car that worked very well. In the final, I think the tyre tactics helped us a lot – I had good grip and could maintain good pace throughout the race. Nothing was finished until the last corner, it was really close and this time we came out on top. Thankyou to the mechanics, the sponsors, team and supporters for a fantastic weekend.”
RX2: Petter Nårsa (SWE) :
“The weekend has been a really cool experience, I'm very happy that it was this event where I made my RX2 debut. Take the parade on Friday, for example, where it was crowded with people. Here in France, the rallycross fans are really true fans. It’s a really powerful experience. Then of course the circuit is also great. It was sad that I couldn't compete with the drivers at the top, but I managed to improve my pace more and more during the weekend. After Saturday, the goal was to climb up and qualify for the finals, which I succeeded in today. Unfortunately, I got a puncture early in the semi-finals. Driving with JC Raceteknik has worked really well. I’ve known the team for a while and know that we can work together, it’s an experienced team with good knowledge about rallycross. Ben-Philip is also a very fast driver, so being able to work with him has been helpful. Thank you to everyone who helped me over the weekend.”