Germany World RX: Kristoffersson beats Ekstrom to win
Already crowned World Rallycross champion Johan Kristoffersson continued his incredible campaign by winning the last European leg of the season in Germany and taking his 10th victory in 11 rounds.
Kristoffersson, who had saved a set of new tyres for the final stages of the event, survived a challenge from fast starting teammate Petter Solberg from row two in the run to T1 to win his semi-final and net pole position for the final.
The final took two attempts to complete after a crash for Peugeot driver Kevin Hansen, who was taken to a hospital, on the fourth lap forced a red flag.
In the first run of the final, Solberg made it to the first turn in the lead, but ran wide and visited the gravel trap.
Both front row starters Mattias Ekstrom and Kristoffersson also hit the outside Armco, allowing Andreas Bakkerud to sneak up the inside and take the lead.
Kristoffersson held off Hansen for second in the run to turn two and then passed Bakkerud for the lead at the first corner of lap two and was at the front when the race was stopped.
At the re-start, Kristoffersson made the best launch and held the inside at Turn 1, as Ekstrom also maintained position and ran second on the first tour in front of Bakkerud, Solberg and Niclas Gronholm.
The Finn took his last-corner joker at the first opportunity before Solberg responded on lap two and maintained track position.
But the Norwegian wouldn’t make it to the flag as his Volkswagen Polo stopped with engine problems on the fifth lap.
Bakkerud meanwhile took his joker on lap four and covered off Gronholm, while the leading Swedish duo of Kristoffersson and Ekstrom took their jokers on the final lap.
Kristoffersson claimed his 10th win of the season while both Audi drivers finished the marque’s home World RX round on the podium.
Sebastien Loeb retired from his semi-final after contact when making an overtaking move on Kevin Eriksson.
Germany World RX: Kristoffersson ends qualifying on top
Peugeot to withdraw from World RX after 2018