Filip Martinsson: “It was now or never”

Confirmed last week for a full season in RallyX, Filip Martinsson will take advantage of the 2024 season to get his first taste at the wheel of the Renault Clio Supercar previously owned by Andreas Carlsson. A new adventure that the three-time Swedish Rallycross Champion is approaching with the utmost seriousness.

A rising star on the Swedish scene, Filip Martinsson has won the title in three different categories of his national championship since the 2020 season.

Now, as he looks to add a new dimension to his career, Filip Martinsson will be seeking to make a name for himself on the international stage in the RallyX championship.

“After three Swedish championship titles, we felt we’d come full circle,” points out the 22-year-old Swedish driver.

“We had had some really great seasons in our national championship, including no less than 21 wins in 39 races over the last two years. We felt it was now or never if we wanted to make the step up to Supercars. What’s more, we firmly believe that the RallyX championship is the one that can open new doors for us in the future and enable our partners to reach new markets.

As a two-wheel drive specialist, Filip could have taken the easy way out and continued his journey at the wheel of his BMW E36 in the Open 2WD category. But the temptation of the supercar proved too strong…

“We thought about the Open 2WD category for a long time. After all, we had the car for it and would have only needed a few changes to take it to the next level, but to be honest, the Supercar challenge was what motivated us the most. We also looked at the possibility of a Supercar Lites program, but for the same reasons our final choice was Supercar. Admittedly, our budget will be much more limited than many of our rivals, but we’re here to learn and there’s no better way to make progress than by competing against the best in Supercar.”

Taking over a Renault Clio Mk3 that has proven its worth with Andreas Carlsson, Filip Martinsson knows he has the ideal car to make his first steps in the category. But more than performance, it’s his supercar learning curve that the three-time Swedish champion wants to focus on in 2024.

“The goal is to take the championship race by race. We know that our car has potential. Even though Andreas Carlsson has shown some great things behind the wheel, the fact remains that we want to stay true to our roadmap. Like I said, I’ve still got a lot to learn. At the moment I’ve only done 15 laps in a Supercar and only a few kilometers in a Rally2. However, I think I’ve got a few things going for me to help me adapt as quickly as possible. I started karting at the age of eight and I think this experience will be a great advantage when it comes to understanding the basics of driving a four-wheel drive car “.

“If I had continued with my BMW in Open 2WD, my objectives would inevitably have been different and we would have had a clear desire to fight for the title, but the situation with the Clio Supercar is completely different. It’s a bit like starting my career from scratch. However, I’m not putting any pressure on myself because I know it will take some time before I’m able to realize the full potential of this car.”

One thing is for sure, the battle to succeed Maiko Tamm in the Pro Am Supercar class promises to be a great one.