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Saturday images from the 2017 World RX of GB
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Petter and Johan ready for World RX UK switch up

May 242018

The FIA World Rallycross Championship presented by Monster Energy is braced for a big shake up this weekend.

For the first time since rallycross raced onto the world stage, the UK round of the championship will move away from the sport’s birthplace at Lydden Hill to the home of British motorsport – Silverstone.

That’s right, the venue more widely known for hosting Formula One and MotoGP is getting a taste of turbocharged mixed surface racing at the very top of its game. What’s more the 2018 World RX of Great Britain will be the centerpiece of the all new SpeedMachine festival weekend at the legendary Northamptonshire venue, which incorporates headlining music acts, e-gaming, food stalls, and a range of tyre smoking demos.

Fresh from the podium in Belgium two weeks ago, Petter Solberg is straining at the brakes to get the weekend going at the box fresh venue. “Everybody knows how important Silverstone is, it’s one of the oldest and most famous race circuits in the world. It’s nice to be coming here, nice to be competing in a new place for RX and nice to have the infrastructure of a modern track like this,” explained Petter.

 

“But I must say, I’m going to miss Lydden. That was a proper, proper rallycross track. I was quite emotional when we drove up the hill and out of there for the last time last year. Finishing at Lydden with me winning and Johan second was a nice way to go. But that’s history now.

 

“Now we have to look forward and we have to look how to get the best out of the Volkswagen Motorsport Polo R Supercar at this new track. We made some good times in testing last week and we were able to find a nice set-up from the car, even if the rain came down on the second day of the test.”

 

Solberg’s sentiments are also echoed by team mate Johan Kristoffersson, who is keen to make a return to the podium after missing out the podium for the first time since the World RX of Germany in October last year. “Of course it’s important to get to the podium, and it’s very important to keep scoring points towards the championship too,” said Johan.

“The last race in Belgium, where I was fifth, that hurt a little bit. It was a bit of a crazy race in the final, with a lot of action in every direction. But that was then. This is now. We have seen just how close the racing is this year. Winning the championships last year was an absolute dream and everybody in the PSRX Volkswagen Sweden team put so much work in, but defending those titles this year is going to be even harder. Every corner is fought over so hard – we saw that in Belgium last time. Hopefully Silverstone will be a little bit more open with some more room to overtake and make some different moves.

 

“The track is quite different in nature to the rest of the places we go to, there’s more gravel than we’re used to – more than half of the lap is on the dirt. So, if we get some dry weather, the dust could be a bit of a problem. But the priority for us has to be to take the points. We have to drive smarter than ever this season.”

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