Sun 06 Aug 2023

Kristoffersson bounces to Belgian victory on RX2e bow

Johan Kristoffersson bounced his way to the top step of the podium on his FIA RX2e Championship debut at Mettet in Belgium today, as Mikaela Åhlin-Kottulinsky starred...

Johan Kristoffersson bounced his way to the top of the podium on his FIA RX2e Championship debut in Belgium today (6 August), as Mikaela Åhlin-Kottulinsky starred to set up a thrilling title showdown.

With the top tier of the FIA World Rallycross Championship unable to race at Mettet as investigations continue into the cause of the fire at Lydden Hill two weeks ago, Kristoffersson and fellow World RX aces Timmy Hansen, Kevin Hansen and Ole Christian Veiby took the opportunity to join the RX2e grid.

It was the younger of the Hansen brothers, Kevin, who initially set the pace, but in characteristic fashion, it did not take Kristoffersson long to settle into his stride, with three consecutive heat wins propelling him to the summit of the intermediate standings.

A slow start in his semi-final dropped the five-time world champion to third, but he was handed a second chance when the race was red-flagged following a spectacular roll for Kristoffersson Motorsport team-mate Veiby. He did not waste the opportunity, and from that point on was never headed, overcoming suspension damage from first corner contact in the final to fend his pursuers off to the chequered flag.

“What a weekend!” Kristoffersson enthused. “In terms of pace, it was maybe our best so far this year. I’d tested the RX2e car before, but it’s very different in a competitive race situation and the final wasn’t easy at all.

“After the hit into Turn One, I could feel something was broken at the rear. The car was all over the place, and I was just trying to hold onto it and not spin in a straight line! I managed to figure out how I needed to drive and could keep up a reasonable pace, and I was obviously very happy to walk away with the win. That was the perfect outcome.”

Åhlin-Kottulinsky has set up a grandstand season finale with a superb drive to second place – which with Kristoffersson ineligible to score, sees her close to just two points shy of Team E stablemate Nils Andersson in the chase for the RX2e crown. Ole Henry Steinsholt finished ahead of her on-the-road, but was later handed a 12-second penalty for contact. Timmy Hansen retired on the last lap, while Kevin Hansen’s bid ended at the semi-final stage.

Full results can be found here.

Latvia
Starts: Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 4:31:00 AM
Italy
Starts: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 8:30:00 AM
Hungary
Starts: Saturday, July 27, 2024 at 9:30:00 AM