Tuesday 26 June 2018

Mattias Ekström: “What Monaco is for Formula 1, is for rallycross Höljes.”

PHOTO CREDIT: FIA World Rallycross Media.
Mattias Ekström claimed a podium finish last time out in Norway, while his teammate collided with Peugeot's Timmy Hansen in the final. The Swede heads home to Höljes, Sweden for round six in the World RX championship. 

Höljes is regarded as the craziest world championship round of the year. “What Monaco is for Formula 1, is for rallycross Höljes,” says Mattias Ekström. “The atmosphere is unique and the circuit one of the best on the world championship calendar. The coolest thing is the extremely fast right-hand corner taken at around 170 km/h just before the jump. Immediately after comes the most spectacular jump of the entire season.”

An estimated 40,000 fans make the pilgrimage to Circuit Höljes Motorstadion for the world championship round. 

The Circuit Höljes Motorstadion, 200 km north of Karlstad is 1.210-kilometres long (Joker lap: 1.250 km) with 6 left corners and 5 right. The lap is 60% tarmac and 40% gravel, with the longest jump approximately 38 meters. The fastest lap currently stands at 41.448 seconds from last year. 

“Höljes is the ‘magic weekend’ for every rallycross driver that everybody would love to win,” said Andreas Bakkerud. “It is not just a big thing for the many Swedish teams and drivers. I also eagerly look forward to the race every year.”

Ekström and Bakkerud have both tasted victory in Höljes. In 2014, Ekström took his first victory at his home race. In 2015, the Swede won again. Bakkerud won in 2013 and 2016 and in his five previous Supercar outings in Sweden he stood on the podium every time. 

“Of course I want to continue this series with the Audi S1 EKS RX quattro,” says Bakkerud

The Norwegian will be accompanied by around 250 of his loyal fans. Because there are no hotels in Höljes, they live in a dedicated ‘Bakkerud Blue’ camp directly at the race track.

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