Anderstorp - 29 June 2002 Today's races in Anderstorp, Volvo's home ground with over 4000 Volvo guests, were possibly the most exciting of the season. The first wet race of the season and a drying track led to an action packed first race whilst...
Anderstorp - 29 June 2002
Today's races in Anderstorp, Volvo's home ground with over 4000 Volvo guests, were possibly the most exciting of the season. The first wet race of the season and a drying track led to an action packed first race whilst a dry second race only thirty minutes later proved to be full of incident as well.
Rickard Rydell took his second front row position of the season in his Volvo. The S60 and Rydell proved to be a strong combination on home ground at Anderstorp in Sweden, with only one tenth of a second between them and Larini's Alfa Romeo. James Hanson proved to be on the pace too, with times decreasing through the session with each lap. He took seventh place on the grid in a highly competitive session with only 0.185 seconds between Hanson and third place driver Tom Ferrier in the Dart Racing IP Alfa.
Rickard Rydell No. 60 Grid: 2nd Finish: 3rd
James Hanson No. 61 Grid: 7th Finish: 10th
At the first corner, Rydell took a place from Larini in the Nordauto Alfa Romeo to lead until Larini regained the lead with his superior engine power on the long straight. At the mid-point of the thirteen lap race, Larini's team-mate Giovanardi also overtook Rydell leaving him in third place, which he defended to the end of the race to score more points for Volvo.
Hanson made a good start, losing position only to the rear-wheel driven BMWs. He made up position quickly and had overtaken five cars to lie in fourth place. His speed and performance was good and he was pushing Rydell in the S60 to challenge for third place. A late braking manoeuvre at the end of the back straight put him onto the grass resulting in a detour through a gravel trap. He damaged the front splitter which badly affected the car's downforce and Hanson managed to bring the car home in tenth place.
Rickard Rydell No. 60 Grid: 4th Finish: 2rd
James Hanson No. 61 Grid: 10th Finish: DNF
Rydell took the lead of the race and built nearly a two second gap over the next three laps ahead of Jorg Muller in the Team Deutschland BMW. As Muller caught up, Rydell needed to drive on the defensive inside line which slowed him, further decreasing the gap. On lap twelve of a thirteen lap race, Muller took his opportunity and stole victory to put Rydell in second place.
The second race promised points for Hanson following another good start and progression through the field to sixth behind Giovanardi. Hanson was biding his time for an opportunity to pass when Peter Kox in the Team Netherlands BMW tried to overtake Hanson on a corner. As they exited, Hanson had the lead and was accelerating when Kox's car impacted with the side of the S60 leading to a spin and heavy impact into the barrier.
Jens Edman suffered mechanical problems throughout the weekend with the new third S60, starting from 21st and finishing 19th in race 1. The gearbox problem was impossible to solve in the fifteen minutes available between races and so he didn't start the second race.
"We did very well in qualifying and I was pleased with the car. We were losing half a second on the long straight but only gaining fourth-tenths on the second half of the track. The car was good but the engine wasn't good enough. I'm pleased with the points and to see so many people here supporting us - even in the heavy rain."
"Not the best weekend for me in terms of results but good to show that I was faster than Rickard in the first race. I tried to pass him but outbraked myself. There's not much I can say about the second race. It was the worst accident I've been in. The car's badly damaged. I just hope that the car can be repaired for Oschersleben."
Olle Odsell, Volvo motorsport director:
"I'm pleased with Rickard's best result of the season. Of course it would have been better wit hthe win in the second race. It's also good to see james on the pace in both races but unfortunately he didn't score points today. It was disappointing that the third car suffered problems and jens didn't get the races he deserved. On the whole it was a good weekend and a good show for the spectators."
Dave Benbow, Volvo S60 Racing team manager:
"My feelings are twofold. First I'm pleased that we achieved our best results so far, but second I'm disappointed when I felt we could have achieved more. It's very pleasing to see that James is on the pace with the `big boys'. I'm looking forward to the engineers finding improvements on the cars and engines so that the drivers have the equipment to deliver even better results."