World RX Latvia: Volkswagen ace Kristoffersson leads overnight

World Rallycross Championship leader Johan Kristoffersson dominated the opening day in the Latvian round of the series in Riga in his Volkswagen Polo PSRX

World RX Latvia: Volkswagen ace Kristoffersson leads overnight

Kristoffersson won the final race of both Q1 and Q2 to top the order, as Peugeot campaigner Sebastien Loeb ran him close for the fastest time in Q1, before being slowed by accident damage in Q2.

Kristoffersson, free practice pacesetter Mattias Ekstrom and Loeb all won their races in Q1.

But as Audi EKS driver Ekstrom couldn't match the time set in the first race of the weekend by Loeb, Kristoffersson survived the bottle-neck at Turn 1 to get away and beat Loeb's time by less than one hundredth of a second, over the four-lap run.

The Swede then made the best start in the final race of Q2 to take victory and set the fastest time, chased by Ekstrom who was second quickest and lies second overnight, the two-time DTM champion having been third in Q1.

Third overnight, Petter Solberg had a consistent day with fourth and then third in the respective qualifying sessions.

The Norwegian ran side-by-side with Ekstrom into turn one in Q2, then had contact with Loeb at the exit of Turn 2 then ran the Frenchman wide, Loeb just kissing a tyre wall with the front of his Peugeot 208 WRX. Loeb managed to avoid a more disastrous outcome.

Q2 wasn't a good session for Peugeot, as Loeb was slowed by the damage sustained from his brush with the wall and Timmy Hansen appeared to break his 208s steering over the joker lap jump.

He then spun in the final corner while trying to make it to the finish line.

Loeb was 11th and lies fifth overnight overall, and Hansen ended the second run 18th and is 12th in the intermediate standings.

Ekstrom's team mate Andreas Bakkerud won his Q2 race and is one spot ahead of Loeb overall, ahead of Hyundai driver Niclas Gronholm and MJP Racing Team Austria driver Toomas Heikkinen in a strong showing for both Finns.

The third EKS Audi, driven by Nico Muller, was forced into a spin in the second corner of Q2 and lies 14th.

Ex-Formula 1 driver and Le Mans winner Alex Wurz spun in his Q1 race but had a close battle with Olsbergs MSE pair of Robin Larsson and Kevin Eriksson in Q2, and is 16th overnight.

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About this article

Series World Rallycross
Drivers Johan Kristoffersson
Author Hal Ridge
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