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ERC Bauhaus Royal Rally of Scandinavia
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Ferratum World RX of Sweden 1
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Starts: Saturday, July 6, 2024 at 6:00:00 AM

Mon 17 Oct 2022

‘World-class’ Bergström continuing to impress

Gustav Bergström reached the rostrum in the FIA World Rallycross Championship not once but twice at Spa-Francorchamps just over a week ago, as the series rookie continues to turn heads at the highest level – with Volkswagen Dealerteam BAUHAUS Team Principal Tommy Kristoffersson rating the performance ‘world-class’.

Gustav Bergström reached the rostrum in the FIA World Rallycross Championship not once but twice at Spa-Francorchamps just over a week ago, as the series rookie continues to turn heads at the highest level – with Volkswagen Dealerteam BAUHAUS Team Principal Tommy Kristoffersson rating the performance ‘world-class’.

After placing fifth in the intermediate ranking on day one at Benelux World RX of Spa-Francorchamps, Bergström proceeded to chase world champions Timmy Hansen and Johan Kristoffersson home in his progression race. His challenge looked to be over at the semi-final stage when he was eliminated in a start-line accident, but a subsequent disqualification for Klara Andersson elevated him into the final.

From fifth on the grid, the Swede then benefitted from the first lap hairpin crunch that sent Hansen into a spin to rise to second, and while he would ultimately have to give best to the younger Hansen brother, Kevin, he nonetheless did enough to cement third position at the chequered flag – and with it, his maiden World RX podium in only his sixth start at the international pinnacle of the discipline.

The following day, an electrical issue in heat one left Bergström rooted to the bottom of the ranking, but he bounced back to pip stablemate Ole Christian Veiby to second in his progression race in a Kristoffersson Motorsport one-two-three.

The same result in the first semi-final – this time behind Niclas Grönholm – secured the 19-year-old a spot in the all-important final again, from where he snuck down the inside to snatch third at the start, replicating a tactic Kristoffersson had pulled off to perfection 24 hours earlier.

Not satisfied with that, Bergström then neatly relieved Grönholm of second through the long banked gravel corner towards the end of the lap – another move he had learned from his four-time world champion team-mate.

Although the Finn eventually reclaimed the position, third place marked another superb result for a driver so inexperienced not only at World Championship level but indeed in rallycross in general, deservedly earning him the Cooper Tires ‘Racer of the Day’ accolade for good measure.

“It feels very strange,” acknowledged the Scandinavian teenager. “This is all new to me and I’m mainly here to learn, get up-to-speed and be faster every time. It’s super fun. I just try to look at Ole Christian and Johan and do the same as they do – copy/paste!

I had already decided on the grid ahead of Sunday’s final to go for the inside, and it worked out really well. The fact that I was able to pass Niclas was also fun. Of course I would have liked to finish second, but I must be satisfied with another podium; it was nice to give something back to the team, because everyone has been fighting for this.”

Gustav sees, listens and learns and is mentally strong,’ remarked Johan Kristoffersson, who described his young protégé as ‘smart’, while Tommy Kristoffersson was similarly full of praise for a driver of whom comparatively little was known prior to the start of the 2022 campaign.

“That was world-class from Gustav!” enthused the former rallycross and touring car racer. “Honestly, it's not as easy as it looks when you’re watching at home on the couch, to make the right decisions at high speed. That was very maturely done. I think Gustav was up for two podium finishes already at Montalegre, but it didn’t work out. At Spa, he got his reward...”