June 30- July 1 2018
It took coming to Sweden, for the 6th and most challenging race of the season for ends to meet!
3rd in a FIA World Championship round in Sweden! There are some things that you can repeat ten, one hundred, one thousand times and never get used to it.
Monday night, after hours of traveling, I finally got to sit at home and take it all in. I experienced a gratifying moment where the first feeling that came to me was relief! And don’t mistake this as me saying I’m satisfied to end on this result! In my eyes, this is just a step in our progression and growth, and confirms our beliefs.
After all that beautiful philosophy :) let’s get down to the race.
After 4 qualifiers, without any major technical problems, and a 10th place overall, it is in the final phase that a path was cleared for me. One thing is certain, at this level of competition, nothing happens without working for it! I needed to have a good start, to make the right choice of joker in the first turn, to stay patient for the opening when Timerzianov got a flat, and the car was reliable right up until the end!
In prior debriefs, I was very stern with my comments on the glitches of reliability. But this time I ate my words. While our competitors fell like flies, the Mégane showed all her strength, and never let up even while I put more and more strain on her.
Then there is the awesome final ... where everything goes so fast ... starting from last place, with a good "call" from my spotter to take the Joker, put me in a position to seize all the opportunities that were about to unfold in front of me.
We are creeping up on Bakkerud’s time - 2nd in the standings, and Audi official driver, with our car that was driven for the first time 5 months ago with private means, 3 years of development and backed with the work of Prodrive.
The first half of the season was a rollercoaster of emotions, with a constantly evolving performance, but difficult to bring home the results we wanted! So this one, feels really good and encourages us to continue our hard work!
To be continued in Canada…