World RX Team Peugeot-Hansen are confident of a return to form this weekend for the third round of the FIA World Rallycross Championship taking place in Hell, Norway after testing at the Swedish circuit of Holjes on Tuesday.
Both Timur Timerzyanov and Timmy Hansen worked through an extensive programme of testing Chassis and Engine updates on their Peugeot 208 WRX Supercars and are happy that they can move forward with a renewed sense of confidence after suffering in the first two rounds in Portugal and Great Britain, where engine issues put both cars out of the running at Lydden Hill.
This was an important test for the team as both drivers are well behind current World RX Championship leader Andreas Bakkerud in the points after only two rounds whilst Team Peugeot-Hansen is 53 points behind Ford OlsbergsMSE in the Teams Championship. With a record entry of 38 Supercars entered for the event in Hell, its already looking difficult to make up points.
Double European Rallycross Champion Timerzyanov finished second at the Norwegian circuit last season, and is satisfied that the test at Holjes has helped Team Peugeot-Hansen to find more speed from the new car.
“I’m very happy that we have been able to test at Holjes, the feeling is really good. We have been trying everything, and making lots of adjustments to the dampers and changing the suspension to find a good set-up, and we have found lots of solutions. I’m feeling very comfortable with the car. The track in Norway is quite tricky, it has a few sharp corners and goes up and down a lot. It’s one of the most interesting circuits in World RX this year. The target is to win, and to be able to fight for the championship for Team Peugeot-Hansen, Red Bull and Total,” said Timurzyanov.
Contesting only his second season of full time rallycross, Hansen is regarded as one of the quickest in the sport and finished third in the European Championship last season. The Swede thinks the test at Holjes has improved the 208‘s balance, and expects Hell to suit the car.
“We had a really good day of testing, we were able to fine turn the car to get a great balance, and we did some really good lap times. It’s great to be able to try some different things to get used to the car without the pressure of an event. I’m really looking forward to Norway this weekend, Hell is a circuit that should suit the 208, it’s quite twisty and slow in places, and there is lots of tarmac. I have really high hopes, and I’m not just saying that because it is the thing to say, I really do think we can have a good result this weekend,” said Hansen.
Team principle Kenneth Hansen has worked hard with the team and their partners to not only resolve technical issues from the first two events of the year, but to also make improvements to the setup of the new chassis prior to round three of the World Championship.
“It was good to have the first real test with the car, where we have been able to get through a lot of things. The team knows Holjes very well, so it is a good place for us to come to, and we have got some good answers and solutions. In the first two races, we didn’t know if the changes we were making were correct, but we have learnt a lot today. Timur is usually very quick in Hell, so I think we can make it to the final. We have done a huge amount of work and analysis together with Oreca and Peugeot. We found what was causing the engine problems at Lydden Hill and solved them, and we have also solved the electric troubles we had too,” said Hansen.
The third round of the FIA World Rallycross Championship at Hell, Norway this weekend will be broadcast on television in over 100 countries around the world. Among those, the event can be watched live on Sunday afternoon for the UK fans on British Eurosport.