Solberg Takes First 2017 Podium Finish In Belgium


Petter Solberg at the World RX of Belgium. Credit: PSRX Volkswagen Team Sweden

One thing that has been clear so far in the 2017 FIA World Rallycross Championship is that Petter Solberg has been a fast combination with the new VW Polo GTi Supercar, but the podium finishes have eluded him.

Until now.

Solberg finally took his first podium of the season at the World RX of Belgium where his finished in third place behind team-mate Johan Kristoffersson and Timmy Hansen. the Norwegian stayed within the top six during Qualifying, after going fastest in Q1 and finished second overall to gain a place in the Semi-Finals.

Solberg was beaten into third place on the line by Timmy Hansen, but it happy with his podium finish. Credit: IMG / FIA World RX

After taking the Semi-Final win, Solberg held the lead for the Supercar Final until Hansen took a tighter line out of the final corner and passed the VW for the lead on lap three. The former Double World RX Champion took his joker and chased both Mattias Ekstrom and his team-mate for third place. Solberg was just beaten to second place in a drag race to the line with Hansen but took his long overdue podium.

The former WRC Champion was very happy with his result.

“What a weekend! We have seen this kind of speed and race coming for a while. I’m so pleased for Johan, but I’m even more pleased for the whole team,” he explained. “The guys in Hannover at Volkswagen Motorsport and in our factory in Torsby have really come together for this result. The guys from Volkswagen brought the knowledge of the car and we have matched them with the knowledge of the sport. It’s made for a very strong partnership.”

Despite suffering several punctures over the weekend, Solberg delivered the long overdue podium finish. Credit: IMG / FIA World RX

Solberg took the positives away from a weekend where his tyre strategy was compromised by three punctures.

“On a personal level, three punctures this weekend really compromised my tyre strategy and for the final we really didn’t have much left to choose from – but we made it. Both cars in the final for the fourth consecutive race, two cars on the podium and PSRX Volkswagen Sweden’s first win. That is a good weekend!”