While the likes of Oliver Solberg, Oliver Eriksson and Thomas Bryntesson have cut recognisable figures at the head of the timesheets in RallyX Nordic presented by Cooper Tires this season, one more unfamiliar name has been increasingly getting amongst the front runners: Andreas Carlsson.
The young Swede is making his RallyX Nordic debut in 2018 at the wheel of a privateer-entered Renault Clio and has shown impressive strides since the opening rounds, leading to his maiden final appearance in Grenland.
However, it was last time out in Kouvola where Carlsson stole the limelight after winning Q3 outright.
When a stunning start and daring pass around the outside into turn one earned him a surprise lead over Eriksson, Bryntesson and Solberg, Carlsson kept it neat and tidy and retain the advantage coming out of the joker on the final lap to take a glorious victory.
Andreas Carlsson’s mega move at the start of Q3 in Kouvola
Though his hopes of a challenge in the final was ended by an unfortunate accident at the start of his semi-final, Carlsson says the Q3 performance is still a welcome reward his dedicated team’s hard work.
“That was a very nice feeling to win in front of those guys and very unexpected!”
“In the first corner I just wanted to get through with a whole car and when I realised I was first there were so many thoughts in my head! After that I just tried to focus on my driving and make the best out of it.
“When I took the joker for the last lap and came out first again, my first reaction was that something must have happened to the rest of them! It was almost unbelievable when they told me I was quickest in Q3!”
“It was really fun for the whole team, when all the hard work pays off. We are very pleased with the speed and how great the car is. I didn’t think we would do this good in the first season in rallycross with a new car that we built! It’s nice to show that we are a really competitive team!”
Check out the final lap of RallyX Nordic Q3 Final Lap