The third round of the 2019 TCR Scandinavia Touring Car Championship takes place this weekend at the new Skellefteå Drive Center in Swedish Lapland, a new location and a new region for the championship.
The circuit immediately becomes the longest on the calendar, at 4.120km, just edging out the Scandinavian Raceway at Anderstorp which held the last round at 4.025km.
The events at Anderstorp led to some exciting changes in the championship, with 2017 champion Robert Dahlgren now heading to his home track at Skellefteå with the lead of the standings, albeit just one point ahead of Andreas Ahlberg, who took his maiden win in the second race at Anderstorp in his Micke Kågered Racing Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR.
Dahlgren, racing for PWR Racing – SEAT Dealer Team in the instantly recognisable bright purple Cupra TCR, will be looking to extend his points lead and break away from Ahlgren and the chasing Audis of Brink Motorsport, with drivers Tobias Brink and Andreas Wernersson only four points behind him.
Also chasing results at the circuit will be Mikaela Åhlin-Kottulinsky, who had a strong start to the season with pole position and a victory at Knutstorp, but had a mixed weekend at Anderstorp and fell back in the points table.
The PWR Racing driver has less experience than many of her counterparts at the Swedish circuits, having mainly focussed on racing in Germany in the earlier part of her career, and so the all-new circuit could prove to be a leveller across the field.
Pre-season testing has been forbidden at the track, which is 1,000km from the next closest circuit on the calendar, Karlskoga, with the track just 300km south of the arctic circle, where at this time of year it’s daylight all day, with the sun just skimming below the horizon at 11:30pm, before re-emerging shortly before 2am.
Robert Dahlgren, #2 PWR Racing Cupra TCR, said:
“I’ve been there before it was a track, and what they have done and the amount of work they’ve done is fantastic. The whole town is behind the event and that’s all they talk about; I think there’s going to be a big crowd there.
“It’s absolutely great to have a new circuit on the calendar, and the plan is to have it permanently on the calendar the same date each year, the same time – it’s great as it’s just before the Swedish holidays. It will be race-ready.”
Tobias Brink, #71 Brink Motorsport Audi RS 3 LMS said:
“It’ll be good fun going to a new track. All the teams will be on square one, no one’s been allowed to test there, so we’ll have to start from scratch for every part, on the set-up, trying to find the right lines, so I think it’s a nice challenge to have something new in the calendar.”
No – Driver – Team – Car
2 – Robert Dahlgren – PWR Racing – SEAT Dealer Team – Cupra TCR
4 – Andreas Wernersson – Brink Motorsport – Audi RS 3 LMS
17 – Tomas Engström – Micke Kågered Racing – Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR
19 – Mikaela Åhlin-Kottulinsky – PWR Racing – SEAT Dealer Team – Cupra TCR
20 – Mattias Andersson – Honda Racing Sweden – Honda Civic FK2 TCR
21 – Andreas Ahlberg – Micke Kågered Racing – Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR
51 – Hannes Morin – Brink Motorsport – Audi RS 3 LMS
59 – Peter “Poker” Wallenberg – Poker Racing For Charity – Cupra TCR
71 – Tobias Brink – Brink Motorsport – Audi RS 3 LMS
Friday 14th June
09:00 – Test 1
11:30 – Test 2
14:10 – Test 3
19:15 – Qualifying
Saturday 15th June
12:00 – -Warm up
14:30 – Race 1
20:05 – Race 2