Yes, I also have never heard of this Rally Bilmetro. And nothing strange, it happens irregularly and infrequently. But somehow this last stage of the Swedish championship has as many as four interesting hooks to hang out for. Let’s get started.
The Swedes can be happy that the rally championship is still going on this year, despite the situation in this World. There are nations whose rally yearbooks will contain only a short and concise sentence on the 2020 page about the fact that the championship did not take place due to a pandemic. For example, New Zealand. In Austria, too, only one event took place in early January, and it is unclear whether there will be another rally. Rally Bilmetro was supposed to take place in the winter anyway, but as it was there with winters in the northern hemisphere, you probably remember perfectly. However, roads in eastern Sweden still got a chance to be used as a canceled rally returned in the autumn. And these roads are quite fast. Rally winner P-G Andersson Rallying Official flew at an average speed of 135 km / h in a 20-kilometer stage. In the woods by the way. Another thing – this rally consisted of only 4 special stages, although their mileage was 62 kilometers – two long, two shorter stages. By the way, spectators were not allowed. Only the media people had the opportunity to watch and capture the end of this season. And the Swedes will now be able to calmly decide where they will host the WRC delegation from 2022, as the Karlstad and Torsby days are already numbered due climate.
Now about the rally winner himself and this year’s champion. Last year, P. Flodin Flodin Rally emerged out of nowhere and won the championship, and this year – P.G. Andersson. This Swede once wandered around the world a lot. Participated in IRC, WRC2, and even WRC championships. If anyone remembers Suzuki’s unfortunate attempt to invade the World Rally Championship, one of Suzuki’s drivers was Per-Gunnar. Failing with Suzuki, he did a lot with the Proton Satria Neo S2000 and was still privately involved in the WRC events with the Ford Fiesta WRC. Eventually, in 2016 he bought an old Škoda Fabia WRC and won the Swedish championship. Then only from time to time, he emerged in rallying with the almost antique Škoda. Until this year. In 2020, he returned with a Ford Fiesta Rally2 (R5) and won 3 of the four events, securing another champion title after a 4-year hiatus. I will be wondering what he will do next year. Because 2019 champion Patrik Flodin has replaced the Škoda Fabia R5 with an old as Earth Volvo 940 and continues to try to win the championship. I will still say a word about him, but for now, I would like to jump to P.G. Andersson’s car. It’s nothing special, but…
It would seem that is another regular victory of the championship for the Ford Fiesta Rally 2 car. In an ideal world, this would be perfectly normal, but for the M-Sport team that created this car, things are far from an ideal world. First of all, the latest generation Ford Fiesta Rally 2 (or R5) unfortunately at least for now is no longer the car that wins rallies and even more so championships. Even multiple Norwegian champion Grondal, who is heavily affiliated with the Ford Group, having spent half a year with the new Fiesta looking for alternatives, as controls of the new Fiesta is causing him trouble. And finds – he won the Norvegian championship event with the Škoda Fabia R5. Not to mention the WRC program hanging on the hair, the sale of various Ford Fiesta’s and Bentley Continental GT3’s cars, and the sale of spare parts completely stopped during the quarantine. So the gold of the Swedish championship should delight the British at least. But there is a bit of a positive without Sweden – the new M-Sport base with the track is gradually being completed, and M. Wilson’s team will deliver the new Ford Fiesta Rally 3 car. So I really wish them the best.
Well, in the end – the already mentioned 2019 champion Patrik Flodin. He showed everyone how to drive with his Škoda Fabia R5 in 2019 and now he is doing the same with the Volvo 940 this year. In that sense, all the R5’s or Mitsubishi’s for him are not competitors that he and his Volvo are afraid of. Patrik drives in the top ten, and finished in second place at the Snapphanerallyt in mid-August, overtaking a bunch of R5s, old WRCs, and other cars of a completely different caliber. Only P.G. Andersson was faster. Especially good space-filling between the steering wheel and the seat in that Volvo. To conclude this article, I will allow myself to dream: Fast and wide gravel roads and such grands as Flodin, Gardemeister, and other Scandinavians with Vorobjovs, Samsonas, and other a pile of Lithuanians, Latvians, Estonians in one rally with rear-wheel driven cars.
There would be no stone left on the stone
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Photo – P.G. Andersson Facebook page