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  • World RX Press Release

ANDERSSON REFLECTS ON ‘SUPER-COOL’ DUELS WITH ‘CHILDHOOD HERO’ LOEB

As a young child growing up in rural Sweden, Klara Andersson used to idolise Sébastien Loeb as he sped to nine consecutive FIA World Rally Championship crowns. Last weekend at Montalegre, she beat him – twice.


As a young child growing up in rural Sweden, Klara Andersson used to idolise Sébastien Loeb as he sped to nine consecutive FIA World Rally Championship crowns. Last weekend at Montalegre, she beat him – twice.


Andersson is no stranger to giant-killing exploits. She reached the final on her FIA World Rallycross Championship debut in Norway last year, made history with a breakthrough podium finish in Portugal a month later and came within a whisker of defeating Johan Kristoffersson in a straight fight in the pair’s progression race at the Nürburgring in November.


After lapping respectively sixth and seventh-quickest in the single-lap SuperPole shootout at Montalegre – separated by a mere tenth-of-a-second – Loeb and Andersson lined up side-by-side on the grid for the opening heat. The Lancia driver narrowly got the better of his CE Dealer Team rival in that race and the next, but in heat four, the rising Swedish star fought back, producing a stellar effort that was good enough for fourth overall.

Both advanced successfully through their semi-finals – Loeb surviving a scare when he almost got caught up in the contact between Timmy Hansen and Gustav Bergström – before renewing battle in the final, in which they were once again closely-matched throughout.


As Loeb grappled with a late puncture, Andersson pounced on the last lap to take the chequered flag fifth, less than two seconds adrift of a second career rostrum in World RX.


“Sébastien Loeb was one of my biggest childhood heroes,” the 23-year-old reflected. “I’ve always regarded him as one of if not the best off-road driver ever, so it was super-cool to race against him. I’ve competed against him in Extreme E before, but this is a bit different and it was a lot of fun.

“I have so much respect for him and really look up to him, but of course, once the helmet goes on and I’m in the car, I don’t really think about who I’m up against and it’s all about getting the job done – and I was very happy with my overtake in the final. It was quite difficult after Turn One, because it’s really challenging on the outside line there.


“We did our best, and I think we did a good job and that the weekend overall was a positive one for us. I want to thank the team and Jussi [Pinomäki – Team Manager] for really pushing me. I developed a lot and feel more confident than ever in my pace.


“There’s still a lot I have to learn; you can really sense that the level of competition this season in World RX is higher and the guys at the front are super-fast, but I was happy with the progress I made and I’m really excited now to go to Norway, especially after the great memories there from last year.”



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