Rustad Rues Missed Chances at Euro RX of Latvia


Tommy Rustad had a difficult weekend at the 2017 Euro RX of Latvia. Credit: McKlein/Albatec Racing

2015 FIA European Rallycross Champion Tommy Rustad endured a mixed final weekend of the 2017 FIA European Rallycross Championship for Supercars at the Euro RX of Latvia.

The Albatec Racing driver started off well by going seventh fastest in Q1 which was held in dry conditions but suffered in the damp track conditions in Q2 to end Saturday in eighth place overall. Despite a slow start in Q3, Rustad followed this up with fifth place in Q4 and qualified for Semi-Final Two.

Rustad pushed the Albatec Racing Peugeot hard during the weekend. Credit: McKlein/Albatec Racing

The former BTCC driver took third place in SF2 behind Tamas Pal Kiss and 2014 FIA European Rallycross Champion Robin Larsson and qualified for the Final. In the race itself, the Norwegian driver was embroiled in a fight for fourth place with Thomas Bryntesson and Tamas Karai, which he secured at the flag.

The Norwegian driver looked back on what was a weekend of high hopes where team and driver were left unrewarded.

Rustad stayed inside the top twelve to confirm a place in the Semi-Finals. Credit: McKlein/Albatec Racing

“Across the weekend we had a few issues with traffic and some battles which naturally compromised my times. I also had a problem with my starts on Saturday, so overnight the team made some changes to improve that, which worked,” said Rustad.

“Unfortunately the speed wasn’t as good as it could have been as I think the later races had better conditions, but that’s racing. Big thanks go to all the mechanics though, in fact everyone in the team, who are all doing a very good job.”

However Rustad reflected on what has been a difficult second Euro RX campaign with Albatec Racing, where he finished the Drivers Championship in fifth place.

Rustad admits that this year has seen a very high level of competition in Euro RX. Credit: McKlein/Albatec Racing

“This was my second year with Albatec and I knew that Andy had upgraded the car over the winter so we had high expectations before the season and this weekend,” explained Rustad.

“The car was very good but it all came together too late and with the level in Euro RX being so high you need to start well to have any chance to succeed. I’m not entirely satisfied with the weekend as I think myself, the team and the car are all much better than the results we’ve had.”