OMSE BUOYED BY SEASON BEST FORM IN GERMANY
Thursday 18th of October 2018
Permanent FIA World Rallycross Championship team Olsbergs MSE enjoyed its strongest performance of the season in the World RX of Germany at Estering last weekend.
Returning to the scene of his incredible round-the-outside turn one move that went viral overnight online and led to his first World RX victory at the track in 2016, Sweden’s Kevin Eriksson almost pulled off a near identical manoeuvre on Norway’s Petter Solberg in Q1 this year, but lost out on the straight before turn two. With some of the best pace shown from the OMSE Ford Fiesta ST in 2018, Eriksson qualified 10th in the Intermediate Classification, and was joined in the semi-finals by team mate Robin Larsson, the third time that the pair have both made the top 12 in the same event this year.
But, Eriksson’s hopes of making his first final of the season were cut short after contact with France’s Sebastien Loeb when the Team Peugeot Total driver made a move to overtake on lap five of semi-final two. Loeb retired from the incident and Eriksson also lost time and was passed for a place in the final by Finland’s Niclas Gronholm.
"It was a very positive weekend for the entire Olsbergs MSE team, even though I was extremely sad to miss out on reaching the final for the first time this season through no fault of our own,” said Eriksson. “It's a shame Sebastien felt it necessary to go for a move like that, because it ruined both of our races and robbed the team of a result we all deserved. On the plus side, the Fiesta ST felt competitive all weekend and it's a tribute to the team for its tireless efforts all season towards closing the gap to our big factory-backed rivals. We may have been denied a run at the final in Germany, but we'll just have to save our best until last by going all-out for glory in South Africa!"
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Larsson finished just behind Eriksson in the Estering semi and is also positive about the team’s improvement ahead of the final round of the 2018 season at Cape Town in South Africa. "This was definitely one of our strongest race weekends of the year as a team, which vindicates all the hard work everyone has put in,” said Larsson. “We pushed hard to get both cars into the semi-finals, which is a great result and being in the hunt to reach the final shows we have definitely made a step forward. Looking ahead to Cape Town, I’m certainly fired-up to finish the season in style.”