European Rallycross

Marklund Crowned European Rallycross Champion In Portugal

2 Mins read
Marklund in lead, as has so often been the case, on his way to his third European Rallycross title. Credit: @World / Red Bull Content Pool

Anton Marklund is now a three time FIA European Rallycross Champion having done enough at the Lusocursos World RX of Portugal (17/18 September) to seal the title with a round in hand. The Swedish star finished fourth in the final, behind a superb Enzo Ide who finally managed to convert his strong pace into an event win, with championship rival Janis Baumanis not able to close the points gap enough by finishing second, and Ulrik Linnemann crossing the line in third.

In a season dominated by Marklund, however, it was far from a straightforward race to the title in this, the fifth round of the season. He got a terrible start in his first heat race, bogging down completely on the line and having to fight back and managing to take 3rd overall. Then, in the second heat, Baumanis and Marklund came together in spectacular fashion. Baumanis was on the tail of the SET Promotion Hyundai i20 for the majority of the race before going into the Joker lap first. Baumanis did what he had to do and absolutely sent it as Marklund completed his Joker the following lap. In a move not dissimilar to when Andreas Bakkerud and Timmy Hansen came together in 2019 in Abu Dhabi, the pair came together as Baumanis came into the Joker merge very hot indeed, colliding with Marklund’s rear left and spinning both cars. Never one to give up, Marklund managed to keep going and convert what looked like a slam-dunk retirement into a race win.

In the final, Marklund was left on the outside of turn 1 before committing that rarest of things from him this year: a mistake in the Joker lap. He managed to stay in contention and ultimately managed to finish fourth, doing enough to secure his third EuroRX title.

The charge down to turn 1 in the Euro RX1e final, with Enzo Ide just in front in his Audi S1. Credit: @World / Red Bull Content Pool

Enzo Ide demonstrated superb driving all weekend, finally taking his EKS Audi S1 to victory. He was top of the overnight standings, having driven consistently well on Saturday, and defended well from Baumanis in the final. Baumanis did everything he could to overtake the Belgian driver, but had to settle for second, finishing less than a second behind Ide. Marklund very nearly got a podium finish, had it not been for the stellar defensive performance from Ulrik Linnemman in his Ford Fiesta, taking the Norwegian driver to his second podium finish of the campaign.

A jubilant Marklund threw his car into donuts after crossing the line, before getting out and climbing onto the roof to the obvious delight of the Portuguese crowd at Montalegre. “It was a big, big relief” he said afterwards, reflecting that “It’s been an awesome year…the car hasn’t broken down a single time. They give me the right tool, and I think this year we have been treating that tool well and scored some good races.”

That reliability and ability to convert pace into regular high scoring finishes is what has set Marklund apart from his rivals this year. Baumanis, who at one point looked like a serious contender, now finds himself a mere three points ahead of Ide as they head into the final round at Spa-Francorchamps on 08/09 October.

POS.NAT.DRIVERCARTEAMPOINTS
1SWEAnton MARKLUNDHyundai i20SET Promotion80
2LVAJānis BAUMANISPeugeot 208#YellowSquad58
3BELEnzo IDEAudi S1EKS55
4NORSivert SVARDALVolkswagen PoloSivert Svardal45
5NORSondre EVJENAudi S1JC Racetechnik40
The Top 5 in the FIA European Rallycross Championship after round 5

Avatar photo
83 posts

About author
Lifelong fan of motor sport, covering the FIA World Rallycross Championship and the FIA WEC, the shortest and longest races covered by the FIA!
Articles
Related posts
DakarEuropean Rallycross

Jan de Rooy, 1943–2024

2 Mins read
Jan de Rooy, Dutch and FIA European Rallycross star in the 1970s and winner of the 1987 Paris–Dakar Rally in the Truck category, died Tuesday at the age of 80.
European RallycrossFIA World Rallycross

PREVIEW: 2023 FIA World Rallycross Championship - Höljes, Sweden

3 Mins read
The World Rallycross ‘Magic Weekend’ returns to Höljes with a bumper crop of drivers and spectators expected.
European RallycrossFIA World Rallycross

PREVIEW: 2023 FIA World Rallycross Championship - Hell, Norway

4 Mins read
The FIA World Rallycross Championship celebrates its 100th event in Hell, Norway.