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Thu 21 Sep 2023

Kristoffersson: Vital to bring our ‘A game’ to South Africa

Johan Kristoffersson is aiming to steer clear of any drama at Killarney International Raceway next month, with double the points on offer in Cape Town for the first time during the 2023 World RX campaign.

Johan Kristoffersson is aiming to steer clear of any drama at Killarney International Raceway next month (7-8 October), with double the points on offer in Cape Town for the first time during the 2023 FIA World Rallycross Championship campaign.


Having won all three rounds contested so far this year, Kristoffersson will travel to South Africa holding a 27-point advantage at the summit of the standings as he chases a sixth Drivers’ crown at the international pinnacle of the sport.


The Swede similarly boasts a 100 per cent record from his two previous appearances in the ‘Mother City’ in 2017 and 2018, but on both occasions, the title was already in the bag, meaning he had more freedom to throw caution to the wind.


This time, there are still 92 points available to fight for over the remaining four outings of the season – 46 in Cape Town and 46 in Hong Kong – and he is conscious that while double-headers offer the opportunity for a bumper haul, should things go wrong, they can also prove to be twice as costly, particularly around a circuit that is no stranger to controversial clashes...

“We’ve got a good lead at the moment and it’s nice to have that gap, but things can change very quickly in rallycross, so it will be vital to be on our ‘A game’ the whole time,” the Volkswagen Dealerteam BAUHAUS star asserted.


“All it takes is one shocker and suddenly that margin would be significantly reduced, especially during a double-header. If you have a major problem or accident on the first day, it can have repercussions on the second day as well, which obviously affects two points-scoring opportunities rather than just one.


“The racing will be as tight and exciting as it has been in the past, and Killarney has thrown up some drama before. If you don’t make the final for whatever reason, you risk losing a lot of points, so we need to be smart, not take too many big risks and try to avoid mistakes.”

Kristoffersson has proven to be the master of that throughout his illustrious career to-date, and he is excited to return to a country that World RX last visited in 2019.


“I really enjoy South Africa,” the 34-year-old remarked. “It’s a great place with friendly people, beautiful scenery and good food, and it’s really nice to be going back. The track has also treated me well the two times I’ve been there so far. It’s quite technical with some very fast sections, a spectacular joker merge and a challenging final chicane.


“The South African fans are always really welcoming and enthusiastic and they love their racing, which makes for a fantastic atmosphere. I’m looking forward to seeing them again and I really hope there will be a big crowd cheering us on.”