Fri 10 Feb 2023

Swede dreams are made of this: Five memorable Swedish ERC moments

FIA European Rally Championship history is filled with stories of Swedish success. And with the country gearing up to host the inaugural ERC Royal Rally of Scandinavia in July, what better time than to recall some of the country’s notable ERC triumphs of the last 10 years.

1: Bergkvist starts as he means to go on
A standout class victory on Rally Liepāja in February 2015 marked the start of a special season for Swede Emil Bergvist, who would go on to finish the year as the Junior ERC champion aboard an Opel Adam R2 co-driven by compatriot Joakim Sjöberg.

2: Åhlin aces it in Latvia
The Rally Liepāja Swedish success story continued in October 2018 with Joakim Sjöberg also involved. Having taken a Junior ERC podium on the Azores Rallye in fifth overall that March, Fredrik Åhlin scored an outright top-three finish by placing third overall in Latvia co-driven by none other than Sjöberg.

3: Solberg makes ERC history
Rally Liepāja was also significant for Oliver Solberg in May 2019 when he became the youngest winner of an ERC event aged 17 years, eight months and three days. The Swede led from start to finish and went fastest on 10 of the 13 stages to underline his dominance on Latvia’s high-speed gravel.

4: Slow and steady wins the day for Adielsson
Having worked tirelessly to secure a Junior ERC campaign for the 2019 season, Mattias Adielsson’s hopes of landing third place in the final standings hinged on the Swede finishing Barum Czech Rally Zlín that August. Switching to a more affordable ride for the Junior ERC finale, the cash-strapped Adielsson made it home in fifth place in class to clinch third in the 2019 Junior ERC ranking.

5: Solberg’s title joy is one for the family
The battle for the 2020 Junior ERC title for Rally2 cars came down to the Rally Islas Canarias finale at the end of a season delayed and shortened by the COVID-19 pandemic. While Adrien Fourmaux beat Oliver Solberg to class honours on the rally, Solberg’s performance throughout the campaign were enough for him to edge Grégoire Munster to the crown. As well as the coveted title, Solberg was handed a prize package of 100,000 euros. But with a switch to Hyundai Motorsport for a world championship campaign in place for 2021, Solberg gifted the cash to his cousin Oscar to mount his own Junior ERC bid the following season.

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