An emblematic figure of CrossCar in Scandinavia, Sebastian Enholm confirmed his reputation in 2023 by winning the RallyX championship.
And to think that before the 2023 season, Sebastian Enholm had only competed in two races at this level of racing.
Three-time Swedish CrossCar champion between 2018 and 2020, the Speedcar driver made a big impression in 2021 when he competed in the RallyX event in Nysum for the first time in his career.
Winner of the intermediate classification on two consecutive occasions in Denmark, Sebastian Enholm made his mark by finishing third on the podium in Race 1 and then taking his first ever win in Race 2.
This performance allowed him to take the lead in the overall standings. A lead that Sebastian would not pursue, preferring to concentrate on winning a fourth consecutive championship in his home country.
In 2022, Sebastian will follow the same strategy, choosing to compete in the European Nitrocross division. With two wins and three podiums from four races, the Fjugesta-based competitor was able to add another title to his collection of trophies.
Naturally, when Sebastian decided to enter the RallyX championship at the beginning of 2023, he was inevitably one of the favorites for the crown, along with Elias Svensson, Thomas Eek Murstad, Riku Huuhka and the experienced Osterberg, Penttinen and Baldins.
A status that the Swede quickly confirmed by finishing the first weekend of the season in Nysum in second place overall behind Thomas Eek Murstad, thanks to two consecutive podium finishes in Denmark.
However, Sebastian admits that appearances were deceptive ahead of this first event of the 2023 season.
“In reality we had a lot of problems at the beginning of the championship. There was something wrong with our machine and when we arrived in Denmark we quickly realized that our weekend was going to be complicated. Despite our best efforts to correct the situation, I didn’t feel any positive development after the first free practice session,” says Sebastian Enholm, who will finally be using the Speedcar chassis normally driven by his sister Frida.
A change that proved to be more than beneficial.
“I managed to finish on the second step of the podium in both races in Nysum. In other words, for what looked like a complicated start to the championship, we did pretty well”.
However, three successive eliminations in the semi-finals (Tierp 1, Tierp 2 and Kouvola 1) thwarted this rise to prominence. This did not stop Sebastian Enholm from going on the offensive and taking advantage of Kouvola 2 to score his first win of the year.
This performance allowed him to take control of the overall standings, a position he never relinquished until the final stage of the 2023 season at Höljes, where he held off the attacks of the duo Thomas Eek Murstad/Elias Svensson.
This is the Speedcar driver’s fifth major success since the 2018 season.
“When you take on a championship like RallyX, where the gaps are extremely small, you absolutely have to focus on the long term. As for the rest, you have to be able to rely on a good team and pay attention to all the little details, because you can’t afford the slightest incident if you want to be in a position to fight for the title,” concludes Sebastian.
Above all, the Swede established himself as a model of consistency during the qualifications. In 26 qualifying sessions, Enholm only set the fastest time twice, but he remains the only driver in the CrossCar category to have finished in the top eight on 20 occasions.
It was clearly in qualifying that the experienced Fjugesta driver made the difference, scoring a total of 98 points in the intermediate standings, compared to 91 for Murstad and 86 for Svensson.
A dominance that does not displease Sebastian.
“This title has a lot of value, but my first trophy in the Swedish championship remains the one that means the most to me. The same goes for Nitrocross, which was a really unique experience with a lot of media coverage and very interesting prize money. However, the RallyX title is very satisfying because I’ve never had to fight against so many efficient drivers in a single season.”
The question on everyone’s lips now concerns the short-term future of Sebastian Enholm. Indeed, since the inception of the category in RallyX, no CrossCar title winner has ever seen fit to put his crown back on the line.
At the end of 2019, Nils Andersson had decided to move on to Supercar Lites. The same goes for Max Rundberg in 2020, or Isak Reiersen, who used his title in 2021 to successfully turn to the Swedish Rally Championship, while Oscar Andersson was no exception in 2022.
“I had a great season in 2023, but at the moment my plans for 2024 are not entirely clear. We’re currently working on a new car configuration that we’ll be testing soon in Spain and we’ll see how things go. What is certain, however, is that if I return to the RallyX championship, it will clearly be with the ambition of defending my crown”.