Tuesday 18 June 2019

'This is not how I imagined my first World RX win to come' - Grönholm.

Niclas Grönholm claims maiden World Rallycross win after Anton Marklund was disqualified for a technical infringement.

“This is not how I imagined my first ever World RX win to come, but that’s not my decision and I will take it as it is," he said.

The Finn made a return to the championship in Norway after a six-week recovery from appendicitis surgery.

Nothing could slow down the GRX Taneco driver who set the fastest times in Q1, Q2, and Q4 claiming the overall top qualifiers position.

A sudden torrential downpour in Hell impacted the grip levels for the Semi-finals and Final and made the driving more challenging. 

Starting in Pole Position for semi-final one, Grönholm took the win by 8.143 seconds. In the Final, Niclas would start in pole position, but poor grip prevented him from making a good start. The Finn then got stuck behind Kevin Hansen for most of the race, even pushing the Swede along. 

Despite Grönholm crossing the finish line in third place, the race stewards handed Kevin Hansen a one-second time penalty for unsportsmanlike behavior promoting Niclas to second, followed by the disqualification of Anton Marklund. The Finn was handed a reprimand for pushing Kevin Hansen but was declared the winner of the World RX of Norway.

"In the Final, there was no grip at the first row of the start grid and that pretty much defined how this run played out," the Finn said.

"There are a lot of positive things to take from this weekend. We were on top of our game for most of the race and I think we had the package to win it on the track."

TEXT - Junaid Samodien

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