filter by category
Mattias Ekström has been on a tear this season, winning overall victory at all but one of the four FIA World Rallycross Championship rounds so far this season. His latest victory, at Lydden Hill in the UK, is his third straight, and helps him hang on to the lead in the very closely contested driver’s rankings.
Racing an Audi S1 for team EKS, Ekstrom had a brilliant ending to a challenging weekend. Reigning world champion Petter Solberg was hot all weekend, setting fast times in his Citroen DS3 throughout the qualifying heats.
“This was probably the hardest rallycross weekend so far in my career,” said Ekstrom after his win. “I could feel we were really spot on and I felt ‘That’s it.’ Then you jump out the car and you look at the time sheets and Petter is going quicker.”
Fortunately for Ekström, he and his rival were on a different tire strategy, which in the end worked to the Audi driver’s favor, giving him a blistering start and allowing him to pass Solberg coming out of the joker lap.
Even though Solberg didn’t win the final event, he did win nearly every one of his qualifying heats and his semi-final heat, so he actually earned more points this weekend than Ekström. Despite that, Ekström still holds the lead in the driver’s rankings, with 105 points. Solberg meanwhile has 100 points, and Volkswagen Sweden RX’s Johan Kristoffersson—who missed the Lydden Hill final due to a puncture—is in third place with 70 points.
The drivers meet again in two weeks at Petter Solberg’s home rallycross in Norway (June 10-12). Three weeks later, they’ll meet at Ekstrom’s home race in Sweden (July 1-3).