Irishman Derek Tohill is heading to Sweden for the opening round of the 2016 RallyX Nordic series.
Double FIA European Rallycross Champion Derek Tohill will compete at the opening round of the Swedish-based RallyX Nordic Championship this weekend at Skovde, Sweden (April 30 – May 1).
The Irish driver – who won the European TouringCar title in 2010 and 2013 – had hoped to finish his preparations ahead of the first round of the FIA European Rallycross Championship at Mettet in Belgium next month by racing at the planned Irish Rallycross Championship event in Galway, but following the IRX round being cancelled, the PFCRX squad have elected to race in the competitive RallyX Nordic season opener, against a number of European and FIA World Rallycross Championship competitors.
Tohill’s OlsbergsMSE built 600bhp Ford Fiesta Supercar had been at the Swedish team’s workshop in Southern Sweden being upgraded to the latest specification, to allow him to race in World RX events this year, and will now stay on for the weekend event.
The RallyX Nordic event will also give the PFCRX team the opportunity to work alongside OMSE and the team’s World Championship driver and reigning RallyX Nordic Champion, Kevin Eriksson, as the Swede embarks on the defence of his crown.
PFCRX has worked hard over the winter months to prepare the Fiesta Supercar for the 2016 season, and are delighted to welcome a number of exciting partners into the project, without whom Tohill’s ambition to become the first Irish driver to win the FIA European Rallycross Championship in Supercar would not be possible.
“I’m really looking forward to racing in Sweden this weekend. It’s all a bit last minute and unexpected, we had planned to race in Galway but with that event being cancelled we’ve made the decision to race at Skovde, after arranging flights for the lads to get out to Sweden.
“I’m impressed with the level of organisation of the RallyX Nordic Championship and the level of competition in the Supercar field is high. It will give us a good measure as to where we are before we get our European Championship campaign underway in Belgium. But, at the same time, we’re not in a position to damage the car this weekend because Belgium is just a couple of weeks away, so we will be taking a cautious approach and doing our best to stay out of trouble.
Scandinavian rallycross circuits are usually great and I’m sure Skovde will be no different, and it’s a big show with the STCC (Swedish Touring Car Championship) racing on the same bill.
The Fiesta is still in an interim livery, we had hoped to wrap it in its fresh 2016 design before racing in Galway, but as it now won’t be coming home to Ireland it will get its new clothes before Mettet.
OMSE has been a great help in making our participation this weekend feasible so thanks to them and the RallyX Nordic organisers for their hospitality and the invitation to myself and the PFCRX team.”
Top Photo: Derek Tohill heading to Sweden. The Irishman celebrating one of many Touring car victories. © JKR/ERC24