Ekström looking to up the ante at Montalegre


Mattias Ekstrom - EKS RX - Credit: EKS/Bodo Kraehling
Mattias Ekstrom - EKS RX - Credit: EKS/Bodo Kraehling

Defending champion Mattias Ekström heads in to the second round of the FIA World Rallycross Championship at the top of the drivers’ championship and is looking to continue the strong start to the season.

The 2016 event at Montalegre, Portugal saw challenging conditions for the competitors as the rain hammered down over the weekend, making the circuit undriveable in places.

“The start could hardly have gone better. Now we have to up the ante at Montalegre,” says Ekström. “I have good and bad memories of last year. Everything was going according to plan up until the semi-final, but then a mistake in turn one cost me the final.” 

Team-mate Toomas ‘Topi’ Heikkinen had better fortunes in 2016 as he battled to third place in his first race for the EKS RX team at the Circuito Internacional de Montalegre.

Toomas 'Topi' Heikkinen - EKS RX - Credit: EKS/Bodo Kraehling
Toomas ‘Topi’ Heikkinen – EKS RX – Credit: EKS/Bodo Kraehling

“The difficult weather conditions made driving extremely difficult, but if you want to mount the very top of the podium on Sunday, you need to have the right setup for any weather,” adds Ekström, “And we do!” 

The EKS RX team head in to the second round in joint first place, tied with the PSRX Volkswagen Sweden team, and will be looking to make the most of the race and create a buffer between first and second place in the championship.

Last time out in Barcelona Ekström took victory ahead of former DTM rival Timo Scheider while both Heikkinen and Reinis Nittis finish sixth place in their respective semi-finals.