Ups and downs for Tidemand in Finland’s World RX

Pontus Tidemand put up a good fight in the Finnish round of the FIA World Rallycross Championship, but didn’t make it all the way. After a slightly troubled start in the Audi S1 he drives for EKS, he battled to get to the semi finals, but finished in 13th place – one spot from reaching the goal. Despite that, he feels that things are moving in the right direction and that the capacity is there.

Saturday began well for Pontus. On the morning’s open practise he showed great form and set the third fastest time. But already in the first heat, he faced struggles.

“I had a jump start, had to take the joker lap twice and then I simply did a bad re-start.”

Just before Saturday afternoon’s second heat, the rain started pouring down on the track. It did not only increase the challenge, but also gave the teams the option to run on wet tyres. Pontus and the team chose to stay on the dry tyres, something that proved to be a disadvatage time wise. Pontus still managed to win his race in the second heat and was in 15th place overall after the first day of competition.

In Sunday’s two heats, Pontus fought to climb the leaderboard and had reached 13th place when the fourth and final qualifying heat was completed. Just one position higher and he would have made it to the semi finals.

“Looking at the big picture, we have made great progress since the premiere in Norway. The car is much better now, it runs amazing on the track and I know it has the capacity to be a winning car. We are not bummed, we have a good feeling and we are excited to aim higher and improve for each race.”

The next World Rallycross Championship round takes place already next weekend – on Pontus’ home soil in Sweden – and he has already started to recharge his batteries for what’s to come.

“We have been looking forward to it all year and we will do everything in our power to make it one of the highlights of the year. You definitely want to do well in front of your home crowd!”