Tom Kristensson cruised through Sunday’s Wolf Power Stage to claim victory in the opening FIA Junior WRC round at Rally Sweden.
The Swedish youngster took the lead from the first stage and that was where he stayed for the remainder of the event. Even a puncture scare on Saturday’s final stage wasn’t enough to deter the Ford Fiesta pilot, as he finished the rally with a 37.8sec advantage over closest rival Mārtiņš Sesks.
“It’s always difficult to find the right words for the moment! This is what I have dreamed about, to be able to start in the beginning and to do as well as this is great. I am so happy and so thankful for everybody who has helped me – this car is amazing to drive and everything works so good,” said the winner.
Finnish driver Lauri Joona had been involved in an intense scrap with Sesks for second place, however, he picked up a puncture on the final stage of the rally and tumbled all the way back to ninth.
Ken Torn capitalised on Joona’s problems and moved up to take third place, 22.6sec down on Sesks. He was closely followed by Flying Finn Sami Pajari, who was a further 11.2sec back.
Raul Badiu impressed onlookers with two stage wins and rounded out the top-five. The Romanian trailed Pajari by just over two minutes at the end of an uncharacteristically mild Rally Sweden. Fabrizio Zaldivar was sixth, 30.2sec behind Badiu.
Credit: Courtesy of wrc.com – the official website of the FIA World Rally Championship