Mattias Ekstrom is on a roll this year and has now reclaimed the FIA World Rallycross championship lead today at the Barcelona RX. The EKS team driver won the event in his Audi S1 RX Supercar and now leads the standings by 10 points. This was Ekstrom’s fourth win of the season.
Second place went to Team Peugeot Hansen driver Timmy Hansen while his 18-year old brother Kevin Hansen clinched the 2016 FIA European Rallycross Championship. Barcelona was the penultimate round of the European championship but Kevin amassed a huge lead over his rivals following his win today, allowing him to be crowned champion ahead of the final round in Latvia.
Third place at Barcelona RX initially went to Volkswagen RX Sweden’s Johan Kristoffersson but he was penalized after the race for pushing. He lost three places and dropped to sixth allowing World RX Team Austria’s Timur Timerzyanov to inherit P3 instead.
Ekstrom now leads the championship with 204 points ahead of Petter Solberg (194), Kristoffersson (178), Andreas Bakkerud (170) and Sebastian Loeb with 154 points. Solberg had a clean run going to the semi final but he got hit by Robin Larsson and never made it to the final. The two time World RX champion finished in seventh place eventually.
For Ekstrom, he is faced with a task of choosing between DTM and World RX in the next round, his current championship lead in World RX will depend on this decision. Speaking about his dilemma, Ekstrom said, “The entry deadline for the Buxtehude race is next week so I’ve been getting asked about what I’m doing a lot at the moment. I haven’t missed a single DTM race in 15 years so it’s a big discussion. I will speak to my bosses tomorrow morning to see what they say but it’s in their hands so I will respect whatever decision they make.”
Round 10 of the World RX 2016 season will head over to the all new rallycross venue in Latvia, the Bikernieki circuit in Riga.