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Norway World RX: Kristoffersson ahead of Loeb on Day 1

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Norway World RX: Kristoffersson ahead of Loeb on Day 1
By:
Jun 9, 2018, 2:44 PM

Points leader Johan Kristoffersson dominated the opening day of the Norwegian World Rallycross Championship round at Hell, setting the fastest time in both Q1 and Q2 to head the order.

As has been the case for most of the season so far, Kristoffersson was handed a less-than-ideal outside grid slot from the Q1 draw, but made the best launch in his race and took the lead from the start to set the best time, the rear bodywork on his Volkswagen Polo smoking after contact to the rear in the first corner.

Starting from pole position in the final race of the day, Kristoffersson held off a challenge from Sebastien Loeb to again set the fastest time and sit top of the standings.

Loeb, who has finished on the podium at each of the four rounds so far this season, braked early on the entry to turn one in Q2 to duck into the standard lap behind Kristoffersson and is second at the close of play on the opening day in Norway.

But, second fastest in Q2 was reserved for Audi driver Mattias Ekstrom, who could only manage eighth in Q1 after a last lap fight for the lead with Kevin Hansen.

Petter Solberg was second and then fourth in the first two qualifiers to hold third overnight, with Ekstrom fifth ahead of Hansen brothers Timmy and Kevin.

Timmy Hansen gained a position when Ekstrom was forced wide in the post-joker lap battle in Q1 with Kevin Hansen, the older brother (Timmy) then holding off a strong challenge from Andreas Bakkerud for much of the pair’s race in Q2, before Ekstrom took the lead after the joker laps played out.

Producing yet another solid performance, GRX driver Niclas Gronholm held his ground against Bakkerud at the joker merge on the last lap of their Q2 race and was seventh fastest, the Finn holding eighth overall.

His teammate, triple European rallycross champion Timur Timerzyanov was fourth fastest in Q1, using an exuberant outside move at the first corner to gain ground, but a similar move in Q2 didn’t pay off, he hit the wall on the exit of the corner and retired.

Alex Wurz had a challenging first day in his maiden rallycross event. He jumped the start in both of his qualifying races in MJP Racing’s Ford Fiesta and is 20th overnight.

Saturday results:

Cla#DriverChassisQ1Q2QP
1 1 sweden Johan Kristoffersson  Volkswagen Polo R 50 50 100
2 9 france Sébastien Loeb  Peugeot 208 45 42 87
3 11 norway Petter Solberg  Volkswagen Polo R 42 40 82
4 5 sweden Mattias Ekström  Audi S1 36 45 81
5 21 sweden Timmy Hansen  Peugeot 208 38 39 77
6 71 sweden Kevin Hansen  Peugeot 208 39 38 77
7 13 norway Andreas Bakkerud  Audi S1 37 36 73
8 68 finland Niclas Gronholm  Hyundai i20 35 37 72
9 96 sweden Kevin Eriksson  Ford Fiesta 33 35 68
10 4 sweden Robin Larsson  Ford Fiesta 34 34 68
11 92 sweden Anton Marklund  Volkswagen Polo 31 31 62
12 7 russia Timur Timerzyanov  Hyundai i20 40 20 60
13 24 norway Tommy Rustad  Volkswagen Polo 27 32 59
14 60 finland Joni-Pekka Rajala  Ford Fiesta 30 29 59
15 74 france Jérome Grosset-Janin  Renault Megane RS 23 33 56
16 6 latvia Janis Baumanis  Ford Fiesta 32 24 56
17 36 france Guerlain Chicherit  Renault Megane RS 24 30 54
18 42 united_kingdom Oliver Bennett  BMW Mini Cooper 28 26 54
19 64 norway Kjetil LARSEN  Volkswagen Polo 25 27 52
20 32 austria Alexander Wurz  Ford Fiesta 26 25 51
21 77 germany René Münnich  Seat Ibiza 29 20 49
22 66 france Grégoire Demoustier  Peugeot 208 20 28 48
23 31 austria Max Pucher  Ford Fiesta 22 0 22
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About this article

Series World Rallycross
Event Lankebanen
Location Lånkebanen
Drivers Johan Kristoffersson
Author Hal Ridge