06 July 2015 ~ 0 Comments

Hot in Höljes: Heikkinen sweeps to fourth at World RX of Sweden

2015 World RX of Sweden: the young Finn finished fourth in the final

Toomas ‘Topi’ Heikkinen was the best-placed Volkswagen Polo RX Supercar driver at the sixth round of the 2015 FIA World Rallycross Championship, the World RX of Sweden, which took place in Höljes over the weekend of 4-5 July. Polos were prolifically-represented, though, with four cars in the semi-final rounds.

Welcome return
After scoring a third place in semi-final number two, Heikkinen advanced to the final race, and finished fourth overall behind the Ford Fiesta of Andreas Bakkerud. It was a welcome return to the podium for Volkswagen-backed Marklund Motorsport, and Heikkinen was jubilant about the result.

‘It’s nice to be back in the finals after missing the semi-final two races in a row. Too bad we were not able to compete for a podium, but I’m still pretty happy with this weekend. With my twelfth place in qualifying I was one of the last drivers into the semi-finals, but I still managed to be fourth overall,’ the young Finn said.

It wasn’t quite such good news for Heikkinen’s team-mate Per-Gunnar (P-G) Andersson. He finished 13th in heat four. A bad start in the qualifying heats was out down to a faulty generator on his 600bhp Polo RX Supercar, while a false start in the fourth heat put a stop to his chances in Sweden.

Runner-up position
Championship second-placed Johan Kristoffersson of Volkswagen Team Sweden suffered bad luck on his home round, with a puncture in the semi-finals. However, he still managed to retain his runner-up position in the drivers’ overall standings behind Petter Solberg, despite a seventh-place result in Höljes.

Over 39,000 spectators watched the other Polo RXs and their foes battle it out in the Swedish heat. Kristoffersson’s team-mate and Euro RX driver Ole Christian Veiby finished fifth in semi-final two. Meanwhile, HTB-Marklund Motorsport’s Euro RX driver, Tommy Rustad, brought his Polo RX home fourth in the first semi-final.

After a strong showing in Germany, it was a disappointing World RX of Sweden for Volkswagen Team Sweden’s Tord Linnerud. The Norwegian experienced technical problems and finished 15th in heat four, therefore not progressing any further.

‘Had the pace’
Michael Schneider, team manager of Marklund Motorsport, summed up the weekend with mixed feelings: ‘I am pleased that we are back in final, but not totally happy. Andersson had the pace for the finals this weekend, but unfortunately he had bad luck in the first heat. Tommy Rustad drove a very good race again, just as in Germany. But, for the rest of the season, I hope to put an end to all the bad luck’.

The overall event was won by EKSRX’s Mattias Ekström. It was the second consecutive Swedish win for the Audi S1 Supercar driver, who initially finished second in Höljes, but was awarded the first place after Peugeot’s Timmy Hansen was penalised for an overtaking manoeuvre on the last corner of the final.

The next round of the 2015 FIA World Rallycross Championship, the Word RX of Canada, takes place in Trois-Rivieres on 7-8 August.

2015 FIA WORLD RALLYCROSS CHAMPIONSHIP,
DRIVERS’ CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS
1 Petter Solberg, Citroën DS3: 159
2 Johan Kristoffersson, Volkswagen Polo WRX: 115
3 Andreas Bakkerud, Ford Fiesta ST: 113
4 Timmy Hansen, Peugeot 208: 104
5 Reinis Nitiss, Ford Fiesta ST: 96

2015 FIA WORLD RALLYCROSS CHAMPIONSHIP,

TEAMS’ CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS
1 Ford Olsbergs MSE: 209
2 Team Peugeot-Hansen: 192
2 SDRX: 182
4 Volkswagen Team Sweden: 154
5 Marklund Motorsport: 126

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