The 2018 FIA World Rallycross Championship gets underway this weekend with the World RX of Spain taking place on the Barcelona Grand Prix Circuit and 2016 World RX Champion Mattias Ekstrom is looking for his third win in a row.
Having announced that he will concentrate solely on World RX this year, Ekstrom is teamed at the Audi Sport backed EKSRX squad with Andreas Bakkerud in a brand new Audi Quattro S1 for 2018 and is hopeful that he can get his season off to a wining start in Spain.
“Barcelona is the highlight of the year for me. When you charge towards Turn 7, which was the former Turn 1 and see the many fans in the grandstands you get goose bumps.” explained Ekstrom.
“You take this corner almost flat out in fifth gear at around 150 to 160 kmh. I love the general layout of the track.”
Bakkerud, who moves to the Audi squad for the fifth year of World RX, has also seen success at the Spanish venue where last year he stood on the podium with winner Ekstrom and second place driver Timo Scheider. Bakkerud also has that winning feeling in his sights.
“I finished third there last year and was on the podium, the track is fantastic, fast and flowing. I travel there with a good feeling,” says the Norwegian rallycross star.
“We still have snow on the ground in Scandinavia, which is why I’m really looking forward to some sun and warmth.”
With Ekstrom having set the fastest time in the last pre-season test held at Silverstone, Audi Sport Boss Dieter Gass is looking forward to a good start to the season with EKSRX seeing increased support this year from the German Manufacturer.
“Rallycross is still our smallest project and the competition is very strong. Even so, everybody at EKS Audi Sport is fully motivated in 2018 to fight for wins and the World Championship titles.”