Klara Andersson continues impressive progress in RX2e at Nürburgring
Updated: Nov 29, 2021
After her impressive debut at Spa, young Swede Klara Andersson continued her rise in the rallycross world at Nürburgring, where she claimed her first qualifying heat victory and showed again her potential.
The last round of the 2021 RX2e inaugural season took place at the Nürburgring, with the final battle of the first championship title in the series going underway: Guillaume de Ridder led with 9 points of advantage from Jesse Kallio before the final weekend - with a maximum of 30 points still up for grabs. The rallycross track at the Nürburgring was built in 2020 and was raced on for the first time this year - with WRX and RX2e hosting their first event. The course is nearly one kilometre long and is built around Müllenbachschleife. The route is characterized by a steep gradient - in some places by twelve percent. Some new drivers joined the grid for that last round - among them Kobe Pauwels and Pepe Arque. Having made her debut in Spa, Klara Andersson - a member of the Sweden Junior National Team of Motorsport - returned to the series targeting further progress after her impressive fourth place a few weeks ago at her first outing in the series. Andersson started karting at the age of seven and competed in Swedish Championships in the following years, also racing in events in Norway and Italy. In 2018, she switched to rallycross and was second in the Junior Swedish Rallycross Championship in 2020, before securing the Swedish Rallycross Championship in 2021. "After winning the Swedish Rallycross Championship this year, I began to look into the future of Rallycross. RX2e seems like a fun new class which gives you an insight into the direction the sport is heading, which looks to be mainly electric." And what a debut it was in the series: having tested the RX2e car for the first time just one day prior to the round in Spa - where she had to discover the main features and differences between this all-electric car and the BMW in which she won the Swedish Rallycross Championship - she proved to be quickly on pace. As the World RallyCross Championship targets to be electric from 2022, the young Swede's chosen path seems like a very sensible decision, in order to collect experience in the RX2e ahead of her clear goal: "My goal is to drive in the headline class of the FIA World Rallycross Championship" - she stated. Thus, her return for the last round of the season at Nürburgring.
Saturday - Q1
Race 1 saw Pablo Suarez on pole and getting the best entry into turn one before he lost control of his car while Klara Andersson, Jesse Kallio and Isak Sjökvist squeezed each other. All three were able to continue the race luckily, despite losing time. With a great effort, Kallio recoverd and finished first ahead of the Swedish duo of Sjökvist and Andersson. Race 2 was without drama for pole setter De Ridder, who won the race unchallenged, two seconds ahead of Patrick O´Donovan and Arqué. The collective times saw De Ridder ahead of Kallio and Arqué. Andersson sat in fifth place.
Saturday - Q2
Race 1 saw Suarez on pole once again, but he slid into the wall in Turn 1 - which gave O´Donovan the opportunity to pass Suarez on the inside and took victory in the Q2 first heat ahead of Pauwels and Suarez. Championship contender De Ridder was on pole for Race 2 - alongside Kallio. The poleman had a good launch at the start, but Kallio came back with a pass on the inside of the Belgian driver at Turn 3 to snatch the lead. De Ridder had no chances to fight back and Kallio won the race. With another impressive drive, Klara Andersson took home third place in the heat to continue her strong performance in the series and wasn't stopped by the difficult visibility on the muddy and slippery track. The collective times had Kallio ahead of De Ridder and O´Donovan; Klara remained tied on points in fourth place. "With a track and weather which changes between the sessions, it was a real challenge today!" - she commented. "But I feel confident in my pace, and thankful for the support from the team!"
Sunday - Q3
Klara Andersson was on pole for Q3, which she was able to convert into the lead at the first corner and was then protagonist of an impressive drive throughout the whole heat. When going for the joker lap on lap three, she used a different strategy to what we saw all weekend, but scored her first heat victory in the series ahead of Arqué and Thorén. In Race 2, the start saw a clash between O´Donovan and Suarez costing both plenty of time. While De Ridder tried to pull away, he was caught by Kallio for the victory. Pauwels was third. Kallio was ahead of De Ridder and Pauwels in the collective times; Andersson sat in 4th position.
Sunday - Q4
From the second starting position, Suarez had the best start - but at the entrance of turn 1 he lost his car and slipped into the wall, damaging the front and returning to the race with a big gap. O´Donovan took home a victory in heat one, ahead of Sjökvist and Thorén. In Race 2, Klara Andersson was on the outside line and was forced to drop back behind all other drivers into the first turn after being hit. Unfortunately, she wasn't able to get the track positions back. Ahead, it was a great battle for the lead between De Ridder and Kallio, characterized by close track positions and different joker lap strategies. That would put Kallio into the winning position, ahead of De Ridder and Pauwels. Timesheets saw O´Donovan in front, leading Kallio and De Ridder. Klara Andersson was 6th: "P6 in Q4 after some steering damage from the start."
Sunday - Semi-Finals & Final
Unfortunately for young Swedish driver Klara Andersson, her journey at Nürburgring found a hurdle in the semi-final, where she finished fourth in her heat. "Tough final day at Nürburgring! Different conditions and lack of experience with this car was challenging." - she commented. "I felt confident in our pace we showed in Q3, but unfortunately our set up strategy didn’t pay off in the semi final." "Still awesome to end a fantastic season at the iconic Nürburgring! Forever thankful to my partners, team and Svensk Bilsport for the support! Time to fight for season 2022!" - she concluded. It was Guillaume de Ridder who scored the win of the weekend and crowned himself the first ever champion of the RX2e series. Jesse Kallio was second and scored the runner-up spot in the 2021 season. After taking the start in only two rounds, Klara Andersson scored a seventh place in the championship standings and shows the potential of the 21 year old driver, who will hopefully be back on the grid for a full season in 2022.