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01 Jul 2013

PR: Marklund Motorsport

Category: Press Releases Posted 01.07.13 16:07 by

Guest driver Swede Mattias Ekström claims two Top 5 results in his first ever Rallycross weekend.

 

In a mixed weekend for Marklund Motorsport guest driver and Rallycross rookie Mattias Ekström placed 4th in the third round race of X Games in Munich, after taking 5th in round two on the previous day.

From practice, into seeding and then in the heats Ekström was incredibly fast. Pitched against Sverre Isachsen, Bryce Menzies and “Bucky” Lasek in his heat, the Swedish DTM legend held his own, getting straight into pole off the start line. Maintaining his pace throughout, Ekström finished the six laps three seconds ahead of his competitors.

Moving into the final, Ekström faced a tough battle, with Isachsen almost on top of him on the first corner, coming out from the tussle in 7th. As Brian Deegan exited the race on the second lap, the Marklund Motorsport driver was propelled into 6th, ahead of Ken Block. In the third and fourth laps Ekström stayed close to 5th place Townsend Bell, almost passing him on several occasions and eventually clearing him on the fifth jump. Despite holding his place for a further three laps, Block overtook him on the first corner of the final lap. Ekström kept in close pursuit, managing to tactically claim 4th, passing Block on the very last corner.

Of the weekend Ekström commented: “I’m very pleased with the two days as a whole. I learned a lot, I had a great time and really enjoyed the experience but I can’t deny that the results could have been better. 5th and 4th is just outside of the medals, I came here with the dream of getting one even though I was entering as a rookie. I cannot say enough of the team and everyone that has given me the chance to do this and I cannot wait for next weekend in Höljes.”

Having taken 4th place in round two the day before, the team’s first driver Anton Marklund did not have the same luck as his teammate on the second day. Marklund’s heat started well, with the driver in 2nd position for the first two laps but unfortunately crashed into the tyre barrier after close contact with Steve Arpin on the fourth and could not finish.

Also in a strong position at the beginning of the LCQ, a restart had all drivers back to the grid. Extremely close contact on the first corner of the restarted race had Marklund out of the running and unable to continue as the LCQ was restarted for a second time.

Clearly disappointed with the result of day two in Munich, Marklund stated: “Both me and Mattias had good pace at the start of the day but lots of contact and some bad crashes meant I was unable to make it to today’s final. I’m super happy that Mattias has taken his first weekend in Rallycross head on and come out with a great result that the whole team is very proud of.”

 

Photo: Mattias Ekström walked for the first time in the shoes of his father Bengt, a wellknown Rallycrosser of the 1990s. © JKR/ERC24