Radstroem wins FIA Junior WRC battle in Sweden

Radstroem wins FIA Junior WRC battle in Sweden

19.02.2018: The FIA Junior World Rally Championship got off to a stunning start at this weekend’s Rally Sweden – Dennis Rådström and Johan Johansson securing a popular home victory behind the wheel of

The FIA Junior World Rally Championship got off to a stunning start at this weekend’s Rally Sweden – Dennis Rådström and Johan Johansson securing a popular home victory behind the wheel of their Pirelli-shod one-litre EcoBoost Ford Fiesta R2.



For the first time in over a decade, the Junior crews have had to master the art of winter rallying. As expected, the Nordic drivers came to the fore and an intense battle of the Swedes between Rådström and Emil Bergkvist developed over the course of the weekend.



Highlighting the intensity of the fight between the two young Swedes, the pairing were tied on exactly the same overall time at Friday’s midday service break. With Rådström securing nine stage wins, and Bergvisk five, the lead changed hands six times.



But it was Rådström, who hails from the host town of Torsby, who claimed the spoils – securing the win with a 7.3 second advantage over his compatriot.



Estonia’s Ken Torn had kept in touch with the leading duo but when he rolled his Fiesta on the first stage of Saturday morning, Julius Tannert climbed into third place – although not without a late scare on Saturday’s closing Torsby stage.



Colliding with an advertising banner on the racing line, the German damaged the radiator of his Fiesta and dramatic scenes ensued at the in-control as he drove into sight with steam billowing from the bonnet.



Expert advice from the M-Sport Poland technicians saw him safeguard the engine and the car was fully repaired in service – allowing Tannert to achieving his pre-rally goal of a podium position through the closing stages.



Elsewhere in the field, all of the Junior drivers must be praised for their enthusiasm, determination and willingness to learn. If the season is to be anything like the opening round, we’re in for the most exciting year yet.




Dennis Rådström (1st) said:


“This is the best day of my life. In the beginning we only did our pace, but today I got pretty nervous! I wasn’t feeling the pressure, but there was a little bit of nervousness as Emil was really close behind. He’s a strong competitor, but in the end we did what we needed to do. I hope that we have shown the WRC teams our development and the step that we have taken in our performance.” 
 


Emil Bergkvist (2nd) said:


“It’s been a really close battle with Dennis. We started the day pushing very hard to see if we could catch him, but we knew it would be difficult. To be honest, it took some time to get used to the car, but we made a good step.”




Julius Tannert (3rd) said:


“To be third at Rally Sweden is definitely more than we expected. For sure, this has been a very good event for us and a very good start to the season.”




FIA Junior World Rally Championship Manager, Maciej Woda, said:



“Congratulations to Dennis and Johan. It’s always a special feeling to win at home, but even more so for Dennis as we’re based here in his home town of Torsby. In fact, I need to say congratulations to every crew this weekend.



We’ve seen fantastic performances throughout the field and it’s clear to see that there are some future starts amongst the lineup. We’ve seen speed, determination, enthusiasm, and willingness to learn – everything that will see these young guys go far.”


 

Anna Louise Rudd- photos M-Sport

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/radstroem-wins-fia-wrc-junior-sweden---172772.html

19.02.2018 / MaP

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