Aksel Lund Svindal, who is regarded as one of the most successful alpine skiers in history, is heading off-piste for his latest adventure as he prepares to make his rallycross debut on home soil in Hell (Norway, 13/14 August) in the FIA RX2e Rallycross Championship.
The double Olympic gold medal winner and five-time world champion is no stranger to setting and breaking records, as Svindal is the only man to secure three major global downhill titles.
His Olympic gold in alpine skiing in South Korea in 2018 made him the oldest skier to achieve such a feat at the age of 35. He remained ultra-competitive right up to the moment he hung up his skis following the 2019 FIS World Championships in Åre, Sweden, where he bowed out in style with downhill silver, missing a sixth career gold by a scant two hundredths-of-a-second.
Having raced in Porsche Sprint Challenge Scandinavia this year, winning on his debut and occupying fifth spot in the current overall standings, the 39-year-old is ready to test his mettle with a one-off outing in the all-electric RX2e series.
Featuring on the support package to the FIA World Rallycross Championship – which will similarly go fully-electric this year, beginning in Hell – RX2e is a fiercely-contested category in which competitors duel in identical cars producing 250kW (335bhp) of power and up to 510Nm of torque, with a number of other parameters prioritising driver skill above anything else.
Svindal tested the RX2e car at Spain’s Circuit Calafat last week, with guidance and tuition from Sweden’s Klara Andersson – who raced in RX2e in 2021 and will make her World Championship debut in Norway as the first permanent female entrant in World RX history – and fellow rising star Nils Andersson, who reached the rostrum in the series for the first time at Höljes last month.
Having enjoyed his initial laps behind the wheel, keen environmentalist Svindal has offered an insight into the motivation behind his upcoming RX2e appearance.
“Norway has always had a passion for rallycross, and now with this new era of fully electric rallycross cars it’s the perfect fit with the EV adoption we have,” says Svindal.
“As Norwegians, we are familiar with the acceleration of electric cars, and both the acceleration and handling of the RX2e car on such rough surfaces is very impressive. Even if I’m only an amateur and this is just for fun, to go to Hell and see everything up close and join the action is something.
“It’s no secret that I’m a big advocate of sustainability and innovation, and with the increasing electrification of motorsport and the incredible performance that will bring, I’m super excited to see what the future has in store.”