News 1999

Season ends with a crash for Per (4-10-1999)
Crash in the second heat destroyed the weekend for Eklund

Per Eklund was allready the 1999 European Champion before start of the last race of the season in Buxtehude, Germany. Per was ready to end the season with another top result. The weekend started out very well, with Eklund in his SAAB 9-3 fastest in the time practise.
Eklund showed that he was the champion followed by main contender Kenneth Hansen and Lasse Sällström. In the first qualifying heats Eklund had to much wheel spin in the start.
Jernberg had a rocket start and managed to get on the outside line of Eklund into the first corner. Eklund then hunted Jernberg's Ford Focus for three laps before he found the right gap to overtake. Per ran a fantastic last lap finishing third in the round just after Ludvig Hunsbedt and Kenneth Hansen. In the second qualifying heat Eklund lned up on the grid next to Hunsbedt, Jos Kuypers, Martin Iversen and Pavel Koutney.
Eklund and Hunsbedt were running side by side at almost 140 km/h towards the first corner when suddenly Eklund was hit from behind, the impact spun the SAAB in to the tire wall. A heavy crash which almost took the SAAB out of the race, wheels came of the car and the roof was bent .
Per injured his foot and was quite blue on his shoulder after the crash. The car really looked to be beyond repairbut as usual the mechanics made the impossible possible. No one really thought that Per could come out in the third heats, but the car was ready just before the start.
In the start of the third qualifying heats a rear drive shaft exploded in Eklunds car. Probably due to the damage caused by the accident in the previous heat. With only front wheel drive Per drove as soft as possible, trying to keep up the speed as he really needed a good time to be able to get to the finals. Per managed to finish in 17:th fastest time, just one position out of the finals.
So the 1999 European champion had to watch the finals from the grandstands; knowing that no one could catch him in the overall standings. Now the celibrations could start as this was the last race of the year. Kenneth Hansen had an excellent finish for the season wining here in Germany.
Per and Kenneth have really dominated this years championship

Time practise

1. Per Eklund SAAB 9-3 40.11
2. Kenneth Hansen Citroën Xsara 40.70
3. Lasse Sällström Ford Escort 40.95
4. Eivind Opland Mitsubishi 40.95
5. Rolf Volland VW Golt T16 41.06
6. Pavel Koutney Ford Escort 41.10

First heats

1. Ludvig Hunsbedt 2.38,28
2. Kenneth Hansen 2.39,59
3. Per Eklund 2.40,02
4. Michael Jernberg 2.40,85
5. Jos Kuypers 2.41,63
5. Jos Kuypers 2.41,63

Second heats

1. Kenneth Hansen 2.36,40
2. Eivind Opland 2.39,08
3. Pavel Koutney 2.39,42
4. Morgan Antonsson 2.40,47
5. Jos Kuypers 2.40,61
6. Michael Jernberg 2.41,11

Third heats

1. Kenneth Hansen 2.34,92
2. Ludvig Hunsbedt 2.36,48
3. Lasse Sällström 2.38,32
4. Eivind Opland 2.38,65
5. Pavel Koutney 2.38,80
6. Martin Iversen 2.39,26

1. Kenneth Hansen (S) Citroën
2. Ludvig Hunsbedt (N) Ford
3. Pacel Koutney (CZ) Ford
4. Jos Kuypers (NL) Ford
5. Lasse Sällström (S) Ford
6. Eivind Opland (N) Mitsubishi

Per Wins Crushes Competition in Götene (11-09-1999)

SM title to Hansen. Per ran a great race in this the SM finals in Götene. Since the SM points are worth double Per was not mathematically eliminated from the title race. Hansen was leading the series by 10 points going in to the final series race. In order for Per to take home the title he had to win and Hansen had to take third or less.

Both competitions knew this and were loaded for the race. In the first qualifying heat Per misted a shift off the line and had to battle back to a third place finish behind Hansen and Larsson. Later in the Depot Per trimmed his car and came out in both the second and third heats with a vengeance and won both quals easily.

Giving him the second place in the start grid in the A finals behind Jernberg. Hansen who had a bad second and third heat was fifth in the grid. Finals: Per won the start with Hansen tight behind. Hansen and Per soon left the rest of the grid long behind as both drivers fought for position.

Both drivers drove a flawless race and both Per and Hansen were tight through all four laps. Hansen could not pass and settled for a second place finish at his home track. The SM series went to Hansen with Per taking Silver for the second year in a row. With one race left in the EM series Per has already clinched the EM title.

Per Wins in Norway. EM title in the Bag! (05-09-1999)

After a fantastic weekend in Norway Per Eklund has secured the European championship title with still one more event to go. This year has Per shown fantastic results in all events. Two wins, four second places and two third are the result of good driving and a reliable car.

Per has been close to the title before but never quite managed to go the distance. Big crash and restart in the A-final Per had pole position in the final. Ludvig Hunsbedt, Kenneth Hansen, Pavel Koutney, Michael Jernberg and Martin Iversen followed on the grid.

Eklund stalled the engine in the start but managed to recover just before main title competitor Kennet Hansen and Michael Jernberg. Ludvig Hunsbedt won the start but Eklund set of in a tremendous fight, knowing that he could secure the title only by winning. After the first lap was Eklund very close when Hunsbedt suddenly developed transmission problems with his car.

Hunsbedt tried to steer out of the track, but Eklund had no chance to avoid hitting. Hunsbedt. Per then went into a spin over to the left side of the track. Michael Jernberg also crashed into Hunsbedt and pushed him so that he slid over to the right side of the track, where Kenneth Hansen was.

Hansen also crashed in to Ludvig's car and all three cars were totally destroyed. Eklund came out well a head of the rest of the guys when the race was red flagged and stopped because of the heavy accident. Kenneth was picked up by the ambulance and he complained about neck pain. He was brought to the hospital but, returned to the track later on without problems.

In the restart Eklund was first followed by Martin Iversen and Pavel Koutney. The Checz driver had transmission problems so Eklund could drive to take an easy victory in front of Iversen. Next weekend there will be the final round of the Swedish championship where Eklund has an outside chance to take home the SM. title.

Results from Norway
1. Per Eklund Sweden Saab 9-3
2. Martin Iversen Norway Ford Escort
3. Pavel Koutney Checz Republic Ford Escort
4. Ludvig Hunsbedt Norway Ford Escort
5. Michael Jernberg Sweden Ford Focus
6. Kenneth Hansen Sweden Citroën Xsara

Per lead in the EM series extended (22-08-1999)

Third in the official time practise

1. Ludvig Hunsbedt 39,59
2. Pavel Koutney 39,85
3. Per Eklund 39,96
4. Michael Jernberg 40,034
5. Lasse Sällström 40,15
6. Kenneth Hansen 40,31

Second fastest in the first heats Hunsbeth won the start ahead of Per who had a bad start. Per managed to make up time and passed Sällstrom in the second corner. Per went on to take second place..

1. Ludvig Hunsbedt 2.36,86
2. Per Eklund 2.38,00
3. Martin Iversen 2.39,83
4. Lasse Sällström 2.40,02
5. Kenneth Hansen 2.40,08
6. Martin Schanche 2.41,36

Third fastest in second heats Per had a wheelspin and as a result had a bad start. Schanche was fastest followed by Sällström. Per drove hard and was able to overtake Schanche and Sällström in the first lap.

1. Ludvig Hunsbedt 2.36,43
2. Kenneth Hansen 2.36,80
3. Per Eklund 2.37,29
4. Pavel Koutney 2.38,21
5. Michael Jernberg 2.38,34
6. Lasse Sällström 2.39,05

Fastest in the third heats A perfect start for Per. Per battled Hansen for the lead and Hunsbeth who almost overtook him. Per had to back off after the first lap as Hansen hit him from behind.and he almost went into a spin. Per managed to hold control of his vehicle. Towards the end of the race Per missed a shift and Hansen caught up hitting him again from behind, Per kept cool and in control wining the heat.

1. Per Eklund 2.36,80
2. Pavel Koutney 2.37,50
3. Lasse Sällström 2.37,69
4. Michael Jernberg 2.37,76
5. Jos Kuypers 2.38,08
6. Martin Schanche 2.38,35
7. Kenneth Hansen 2.38,66

Per second in the A finals. Hunsbedt had pole position on the grid followed by Eklund, Koutney, Hansen, Sällström and B-final winner Hunsbeth won followed by Per in second place and Hansen in third. Per managed a second place finish thus extending his lead in the EM championships. with two more races left Per has extended his lead to 14 points.

1. Eklund 118 p
2. Hansen 104 p
3. Hundsbeth 73 p
4. Opland 66 p
5. Jernberg 62 p

Sixth place finish in Stockholm (15-08-1999)

Per had a disappointing sixth place finish in the A finals. A false start and a drive shaft problem caused this to be be worse finish in the SM series this year for Per. All is not lost as there is one more race in the series. The SM finals are worth twice as much in the point standing which means that Per can still take home SM gold. Per is also leading the European championships by a healthy 12 point margin.

Per still in the lead (08-08-1999)

In today's A-final in Maasmechelen (Belgium) Kenneth Hansen ran to victory in his Citroën Xsara and thus closed in on Per in the European championships. The Belgian driver Jaques Fransen in a Subaru Impreza came in as a totally unexpected but very happy third place finish. Per Eklund is still leading the championship with a healthy 12 point lead followed by Hansen and Eivind Opland. Time practiceThe Norwegians who have had little success so far in the championship were the fastest in practice. Ludvig Hunsbedt was fastest followed by Martin Schanche who made his best drive so far with the new Opel Astra. Kenneth Hansen was third and Per Eklund fourth.

1. Ludvig Hunsbedt . 39.04
2 Martin Schanche 39.38
3. Kenneth Hansen 39.60
4. Per Eklund 39.70
5. Pavel Koutney 39.86
6. Lasse Sällström 39.91

Heavy rainfall complicated the first heatsRain started to fall just after the opening heats and made it impossible for the rest of the drivers to set any fast times. The Belgian driver, Jaques Fransen, was fastest for the first time ever followed by country man Jos Sterkens. All of the top drivers were set very slow times. Per Eklund was in 16:th place. Per did not have time enough to change over to rain tires so he had to run on dry on slicks.

Per was fastest from the start followed by Martin Schanche. The race to the first corner was was hard between Per, Jernberg and Sällström. Per managed to keep the lead all the way to the fininsh in front of Schanche. The SAAB was not handling well, after the heat Per noticed a gearbox failure with all the limited slips blocked. The problem was easily fixed before next heat.

1. Jaques Fransen 3,06.71
2. Jos Strekens 3,07.88
3 Anna Hane 3,08.39
11. Kenneth Hansen 3,13.44
16 Per Eklund 3,17.29

Third in the second heatsPer Eklund won the start and he drove flat out to try to set a fast time. The track was drying and became faster and faster. As the last heats where run, the track was even quicker and Per's time earned him a third place.

1. Kenneth Hansen 2,47.19
2. Jos Kuijpers 2,48.36
3. Per Eklund 2,49.41
4. Pavel Koutney 2,50.48
6. Lasse Sällström 2,53,28

Third in the third heatsPer once again took the lead in the start but Schanche and Sällström really tried hard to make up time. Too hard infact since Schanche ended up outside the track and had to be towed back to the paddock. Per tried his best to set a fast time driving faster and faster with each passing lap. His time was also this time good enough for third place.

1. Kenneth Hansen 2,41.88
2. Jos Kuijpers 2,42.71
3. Per Eklund 2,44.90
4. Ludvig Hunsbedt 2,45.15
5. Pavel Koutney 2,45.55
6. Jaques Franssen 2,47.71

Times from qualifying gave Hansen the pole position followed by Kuijpers, Eklund, Franssen, Koutney and B-final winner Eivind Opland. Runner up in the A-final Hansen, Kuijpers and Eklund made an even start all trying to win the first corner. Hansen won the fight ad was followed by Eklund ( five meters behind). While the other drivers fought hard but were well behind Eklund and Hansen. They pulled away with the same gap between them. This was the ninth podium finish for Per this season of nine attempts. Per's SAAB 93 has turned out to be very fast and reliable this year.

1. Kenneth Hansen Sweden Citroën
2. Per Eklund Sweden SAAB
3. Jaques Franssen Belgium Subaru
4. Pavel Koutney Czech Republic Ford
5. Eivind Opland Norway Mitsubishi
6. Jos Kuijpers Netherlands Ford

Overall standings in the European championship 1999
1. Per Eklund 101p
2. Kenneth Hansen 89p
3. Eivind Opland 60p
4. Ludvig Hunsbedt 53p
5. Michael Jernberg 51p
6. Lasse Sällström 49p

Per third in Strängnäs (25-07)

After a fantastic weekend when Per Eklund was fastest in practise and qualifying he finished third in the A-final.

First Practise session
Per Eklund 34,12
Kenneth Hansen 34.36
Michael Jernberg 34.52
Morgan Antonsson 34.84

Second Practise session
Per Eklund 33.94
Michael Jernberg 34.21
Kenneth Hansen 34.35
Lasse Larsson 35.05

First heats Misstakes made by the organisers put Per in the first heat instead of the last. Therefor he had to run on a watered and slower track. Per was winnig the start and he then was drove to set the fastest time in the first heats despiteof the watered track. Per won his heat in front of Lasse Sällström.

Per Eklund 2.22.39
Michael Jernberg 2.22.86
Lasse Sällström 2.23.30
Kenneth Hansen 2.23.31

Second heats Kenneth Hansen took the inside line into the first corner and squeezed his way by to pass Eklund. Per noticed that he was driving faster then Kenneth and went of for the alternative track during the the first lap. He then could improve the speed in order to be able to overtake Kenneth when he had to drive the alternative track in the last lap. Eklund once again set the fastest time of the heats wich with two winns secured the pole position in the A-final. Per therefor did not race the third heats.

Third heats
Kenneth Hansen 2.20.59
Michael Jernberg 2.21.09
Lasse Sällström 2.21.38
Lasse Larsson 2.21.66

A-final Results from qualifying gave a grid with Per Eklund in pole position. Kenneth Hansen and Michael Jernberg completed the first row along side Per. In the second row was Lasse Sällström , Lasse Larsson and Anna Hane. Jernberg in his Ford Focus made a fantastic start and he also had the best line into the first corner. Pers SAAB and Kenneths Citroën were nse to nose into the first corner but Hansen had the inside line.

Jernberg lead followed by Hansen and Eklund. Hansen tried to overtake Jernberg during the first lap. Jernberg drifted wide over the jump, Kenneth was drove on the inside of the jump. When Jernberg was turned in to the righthand corner Hansen was hit him with full speed, driving on the outside of the track to overtake Jernberg.

Eklund was also just on the bumper of Jernberg so when the Ford drifted wide during the crash with Hansen could Eklund find a gap to take second position. This big battle costed a lot of time and Sällström who took the alternative track at the first lap made gains so much so that he could overtake Eklund when he took the alternative track.

Hansen finished first, followed by Sällström, Eklund, Jernberg, Larsson and Hane. After the race the stewards decided to claim Hansen not guilty of overtaking outside the track because he was pushed there (strange because Jernberg was acctually in front of Hansen). Hansen is now leading the Swedish championship after three rounds followed by Per Eklund.

Results Strängnäs
1. Kenneth Hansen Citroën Xsara 15p
2. Lasse Sällström Ford Escort 12p
3. Per Eklund SAAB 9-3 10p
4. Michael Jernber´g Ford Focus 9p
5. Lasse Larsson Audi S2 8p
6. Anna Hane Audi S2 7p
7. Thomas Andersson Ford Escort 6p
8. P-O Davidsson Mitsubishi Lancer 5p
9. Morgan Antonsson SAAB 9-3 4p
10. Dan Andersson Mitsubishi Lancer 3p

Second place finish in Finland (11-07-1999)

The lead is increasing! Per finnished second in Finland but is was another very successful weekend for Per Eklund. During the fifth round of the european championship Eivind Opland took his first ever div 1 victory followed by Per and Lasse Sällström. Per's main contender in the championship, Kenneth Hansen, finnished in fifth place. This means that Pers lead has extended to 15p. Martin Schanche blew his engine in the B-final and Michael Jernberg had some technical problems so he did not make it to the finals.

Third in practise
1. Kenneth Hansen 32.64
2 Eivind Opland 33.49
3. Per Eklund 33.54
4. Michael Jernberg 33.57
5. Pavel Koutney 33.61

Fastest in first heats Kenneth Hansen jump-started and had a gearbox breakage in the first start. In the restart Per had an excellent start. He hade excelant time earning the fastest time of the first heats. Pavel Koutney had to retire during the heat.

1. Per Eklund 2.18.33
2. Eivind Opland 2.19.62
3 Lasse Sällström 2.20.11
4. Marko Jokinen 2.20.66
5. .Martin Schanche 2.20.96

Michael Jernberg had differential problems with his Ford Focus WRC. Third in the second heats Hunsbeth was fastest in the start followed by Eklund. Hunsbeth set the second fastest time of the round just after Kenneth Hansen who was fastest.

1 Kenneth Hansen 2.14.67
2 Ludvig Hunsbedt 2.15.66
3 Per Eklund 2.17.17
4. Pavel Koutney 2.17.61
5 . Eivind Opland 2.18.35

Fastest in the third heats Per won the start and he could hunt for the best time followed by Jokinen and Hunsbedt.

1. Per Eklund 2.1765.
2. Eivind Opland 2.18.31
3. Lasse Sällström 2.21.11
4. Marko Jokinen 2.22.55
5. Kenneth Hansen 2.23.77

Times from the qualifying brought Per to pole position in the A-final. Second in very dusty konditions The grid was lined up with Eklund on pole, followed by Opland, Hansen, Sällström, Jokinen and Hunsbedt. There were two jumpstarts before there was a clean start on the third attempt. Opland made a very quick start and reached the first corner as a leader.

Per was pushed from behind so that he allmost went backwards in to the second corner. Kenneth Hansen sneeked through in to second place followed by Per. Then Eklund started the big hunt and managed to overtake the Citroën on the start straight. Then had Kenneth a flat tire and finnished fifth in the final.

Results from Finland
1 Eivind Opland Norway Mitsubishi 20p
2 Per Eklund Sweden SAAB 17p
3. Lasse Sällström Sweden Ford 15p
4. Marko Jokinen Finland Citroën 13p
5. Kenneth Hansen Sweden Citroën 12p
6. Ludvig Hunsbedt Norway Ford 11p

Overall standings
1. Per Eklund 84p
2. Kenneth Hansen 69p
3. Michael Jernberg 51p
4. Eivind opland 48p
5. Ludvig Hunsbedt 44p

Per third in Höljes (04-07-1999)

Per extended the lead in the champonship Per Eklund managed to finish third in the fourth event of the European championship held in Sweden. Per had the best result amung his main competitors in the championship series. Henow leads the pack by 10 points ahead of Kenneth Hansen. Hansen had a tough weekend and ended up crashing during the qualifying and had a flat tire in the finals. Per has finished in the money in each of the championship seris races this year.

Third in time practise Ludvig Hunsbedt from Norway set the fastest time during time practise followed with by 0.5 sec by Kenneth Hansen and Per Eklund. Third in the first heat Eklund was raced with Eivind Opland, Michael Jernberg and Ludvig Hunsbedt. Hunsbedt had an excellent start and he was first out from the grid followed by Per, Jernberg and Opland. Times from the first heats gave Lasse Sällström the first position. Martin Schanche is now starting to improve his times with the new Opel Astra.

1. Lasse Sällström 2.21.07
2. Ludvig Hunsbedt 2.21.64
3. Per Eklund 2.22.62
4. Lars Larsson 2.23.65
5. Martin Schanche 2.23.66
6. Pavel Koutney 2.24.67

Fourth in the second heat Martin Schanche made a fantastic start but he had a spin in the first corner. Lasse Sällström (who this weekend had his best performance ever in div 1) took the lead followed by Eklund. Per tried all possible lines through the cornersin repeted attempts to over take Sällström, but did so without success. Husbedt set the fastest time followed by Jernberg, Sällström and Eklund. Kenneth Hansen crashed into the sand when trying to overtake the Norwegian Eivind Opland.

1. Ludvi´g Hunsbedt 2.17.77
2. Michael Jernberg 2.19.95
3. Lasse Sällström 2.21.03
4. Per Eklund 2.21.31
5. Pavel Koutney 2.22.06
6. Eivind Opland 2.23.36

Second in the third heats Eklund made a great start and he was first out from the grid followed by Kotney and Hunsbedt. Per then could concentrate on driving for a fast time. Sällström was fastest followed by Eklund and Jernberg. Hansens mechanichs managed to rebuild his damaged car to come out in the third heats but Kenneth did not succed in setting a fast time. Sällströms times from qualifying gave him his first pole position in the A-final followed by Hunsbedt, Eklund, Jernberg, Iversen and B-final winner Opland. Hansen and Schanche never made it to the A-final.

1. Lasse Sällström 2.17.71
2. Per Eklund 2.18.60
3. Michael Jernberg 2.18.79
4. Martin Iversen 2.19.55
5. Eivind Opland 2.19.94
6. Pavel Koutney 2.20.43

Third in the A-final A very tight start where Hunsbedt was first out from the grid followed by Jernberg, Eklund, Sällström, Iversen and Opland. Eklund fought during all three laps to find a place to overtake Jernberg. Hunsbedt won his first event for the season followed by Jernberg and Eklund. The result gave Per an extende lead in the championship where he now enjoys a healthy 10 point lead in front of Kenneth Hansen. Next event will be next weekend in Finland.

Results from the Swedish event
1. Ludvig Hunsbedt Norway FordEscort 20p
2. Michael Jernberg Sweden FordFocus 17p
3. Per Eklund Sweden SAAB 9-3 15p
4. Lasse Sällström Sweden Ford Escort 13p
5. Martin Iversen Norway Ford Escort 12p
6. Eivind Opland Norway Mitsubishi Carisma 11p

Overall standing in the European championship
1. Per Eklund 67p
2. Kenneth Hansen 57p
3. Michael Jernberg 51p
4. Jos Kuypers 37p
5. Ludvig Hunsbedt 33p
6. Jean-Luc Pailler 31p

Per third in Knutstorp (13-06-1999)

Podium in Knutstorp This past weekend was the second round of the Swedish Championship held at Knutstorp Ring in the south of Sweden.. Per had problems all weekend with a misfiring engine. The team worked day and night to change everything that could have possibly been the cause the problem but did so without success. In spite of the problems Per Eklund managed a finish third finish behind Kenneth Hansen and Dan Andersson. Per is still leading the Championship in front of Kenneth.

Overall standings after two events

Per Eklund SAAB 25p
Kenneth Hansen Citroën 24p
Lasse Larsson Audi 18p
Dan Andersson Mitsubishi 15p
Lasse Sällström Ford 12p
Morgan Antonsson SAAB 12p
Michael Jernberg Ford 9p

Per Eklund leading the European championship (23-05-1999)

Despite of an engine without compression managed Per to finish third in the second round of the European championship. A victory at home for Frenchman Jean-Luc Paillerin in front of Kenneth Hansen and Per Eklund The Norwegian, Schanche is still suffering from mechanical problems in his new vehicle. In the first heat Michael Jernberg took the earlty lead followed by Eklund, Jean-Luc Pailler and Michel Liger. Per tried to pass Jernberg during three laps without success.

Times from first heat:
Kenneth Hansen 3.15.542.
Jos Kuypers 3.18.833.
Michael Jernberg 3.19.704.
Per Eklund 3.20.195
Jean-Luc Pailler 3.21.07

In the second heat Jos Kuypers was fastest out of the start followed by Per and Gilles Stiecenhart. After one lap Per overtook Kuypers and kept the lead into the finish.

Times from second heat:
Kenneth Hansen 3.16.352.
Ludvig Hunsbedt 3.18.973.
Per Eklund 3.20.824.
Jean-Luc Pailler 3.21.105.
Jos Kuypers 3.21.546.
Michael Jernberg 3.23.85

Third heat Pailler won the start leading Eklund and Hansen. Kenneth gave up after a lap and Per could not manage to get by the French Citroën. Per's car was faster and he tried to pass in every corner . Times from qualifying brought Per to a second place on the grid for the finals.

Times from third heat:
Jean-Luc Pailler 3.21.102.
Per Eklund 3.21.723.
Michael Jernberg 3.23.184.
Michel Linger 3.23.715.
Jos Kuypers 3.25.80'

Despite of a broken engine, Per was third in the finals. The line up for the finals was as follows: Hansen in pole position followed by Eklund, Pailler, Jernberg, Kuypers and Liger. In the first start attempt Per the jumped the start. In the second start Pailler made a rocket start from behind, reaching the first corner in front of Hansen and Eklund. After the first lap.

Per noticed that his engine did not work on low revs. It turned out to be an engine break down with bended valves and no compression set. Despite this Per managed to stay in third position and therefor he is still in top of the championship. The team now must change engines before the Portuguese round next weekend.

Results from France:
1. Jean-Luc Pailler France Citroën 20p
2. Kenneth Hansen Sweden Citroën 17p
3. Per Eklund Sweden SAAB 15p
4. Michael Jernberg Sweden Ford 13p
5. Jos Kuypers Holland Ford 12p
6. Michel Liger France Citroën 11p

Overall standings in the championship
1. Per Eklund 35p
2. Kenneth Hansen 30p
3. Michael Jernberg 28p
4. Jos Kuypers 22p

Per second fastest during time practice in France (22-05-1999)

The official time practice was held in difficult conditions with the weather changing all the time from rain to dry. The Swedish SAAB team were working hard with the car testing different setups with tires and limited slips. The car (as usual) was trouble free and Per managed to finish as runner up just 0.12 sec after Citroëns Kenneth Hansen.

The first six drivers were all within 0.6 sec in practice tells us that tomorrow's race will be very close and exciting. The Norwegian Martin Schanche who showed off for the first time his new Opel Astra. He had mechanical problems all day and finished 15:th overall. Results from the official time practice:

1. Kenneth Hansen Sweden Citroën 38.21
2. Per Eklund Sweden SAAB 38.33
3. Eivind Opland Norway Mitsubishi 38.50
4. Jean-Luc Pailler France Citroën 38.82
5. Ludvig Hunsbedt Norway Ford 38.83
6. Michael Jernberg Sweden Ford 38.84
7. Jos Kuypers Holland Ford 39.19
8. Michel Liger France Citroën 39.25
9. Morgan Antonsson Sweden SAAB 39.52
10. Marko Jokinen Finland Citroën 40.28

The opening heats start tomorrow at 10.00. Per start in pole position beside Jean-Luc Pailler, Michael Jernberg and Michel Liger . The Finals will starts Sunday at 16.00.

Per wins European season opener! (09-05-1999)

Victory in Czech Republic! A fantastic start of the season for Per Eklund. Per earned a 20 healthy points in the opening round of the 1999 European Rallycross championship. Third in the second heat Per was first out of the grid in his heat, but then stalled his engine. He caught up the leaders and overtook them before the finish line. Pavel Koutney was once again fastest on his home circuit followed by Kenneth Hansen and Per Eklund.

1. Pavel Koutney 2.42,67
2. Kenneth Hansen 2.44,84
3. Per Eklund 2.46,04
4. Michael Jernberg 2.47,12
5. Marko Jokinen 2.50,01
6. Jos Kuypers 2.50,19

Runner up in the third heat Per won his heat easy after taking the lead from the starting grid and set the pace until the finish line. Kenneth Hansen was fastest in the round followed by Eklund and Jernberg. The position gave Per third place on the grid to the A-final.

1. Kenneth Hansen 2.41,2
2. Per Eklund 2.42,4
3. Michael Jernberg 2.42,94
4. 2.45,17
5. Jos Kuypers 2.45,68

Victory after a fantastic start in the final The grid was lined up with Pavel Koutny on pole position followed by Kenneth Hansen, Per Eklund, Michael Jernberg, Marko Jokinen and Lasse Sällström. Pavel Kotuny jumped the start in the first attempt. In the restart did Eklund a blistering start from behind. From the second row he managed to squeeze in between Koutney and Hansen and reach the first corner as no 1. Then a great battle started between Eklund and Hansen where Per managed to keep a small distance to Hansen throughout the final.

On the last lap Hansen suddenly developed problems and Per took an easy victory finishing in front of Czech driver Pavel Koutney and Swedish Michael Jernberg. After a weekend without any problems Per Eklund and the Team can now prepare themselves for the next race.

Final Results:

1. Per Eklund Sweden Saab 9-3 20p
2. Pavel Koutney Czech Republic Ford Escort WRC 17p
3. Michael Jernberg Sweden Ford Focus WRC 15p
4. Kenneth Hansen Sweden Citroën Xsara 13p
5. Morko Jokinen Finland Citroën ZX 12p
6. Lasse Sällström Sweden Ford Escort 11p

Practice rounds in Chech Republic (08-05-1999)

Rain and difficult conditions Heavy rainfall and extremely difficult but Per was the Fastest in the free practice The Saab 9-3 was running perfect and Per managed to set the fastest time during the first free practice session. The time for Per 44.19 with Ludvig Hunsbedt on second place with 44.65. In the second session Eklund had some engine problems.

Second in the official time practice
1. Ludvig Hunsbedt 49.27
2. Per Eklund 49.37
3. Eyvind Opland 49.59
4. Lasse Sällström 49.66
5. Kenneth Hansen 50.25
6. Pavel Koutny 50.93
7. Jos Kuypers 50.94
8. Michael Jernberg 51.06

Many drivers crashed out When the first heat started, heavy rain fall began. Per was running in the same heat as Sällström , Koutny and Jernberg. Per's Saab 9-3 was fastest out of the start, reaching the first bend in front of Koutny. The Ford driver pushed Eklund from behind and passed on the inside. Eklund got mud all over the windscreen and could not see anything, but managed to clear the screen after half a lap.

Jernberg crashed the Ford Focus in the slippery conditions. Koutny won the heat ahead of Eklund. Also, Ludvig Hunsbedt and Eivind Opland crashed in the heavy rain causing substantial damage to their cars. Opland and Jernberg can probably fix their cars for tomorrow's race, but Hunsbedt had to retire and go home.


Results from the first heats
1. Pavel Koutney Ford 3.07.80
2. Öystein Andersson Mitsubishi 3.08.03
3. Markko Jokkinen Citroën 3.10.09
4. Per Eklund Saab 9-3 3.12.19
5. Peter Ramler VW 3.13.33
6. Jos Sterkens Ford 3.14.31

Big Crash at the Start of the A Finals (26-04-1999)

Saturday After a long winter and a lot of work on our car, we arrived in Tomelilla for the first race of the 1999-racing season. The competition this year will be harder this year because there are a lot of new drivers to contend with. We have a real fight in front of us to reach the A finals. They’re have been some rule changes to make Rally cross more exciting for the spectators and TV. Today was only practice and I tried out different tires and changed the suspension a little to improve the car’s performance.

I was third in the time practice runs and as you can see the times are very close: 
Jernberg 33’03 Ford Focus 
Hansen 33'13 Citroen Xsara 
Eklund 38’23 Saab 9-3 
Antonsson 38’37 Saab 9-3
Larssson 39’19 Audi S2

Sunday Free practice: We did not make any changes to the car since everything is works as expected. Warm-up: Our warm up trial showed that it will be a hard fight to get into the A finals. Three cars had nearly the same time with only a 0.10-second difference. Heat 1: I started with Jernberg and Larsson. I did not have a good start and I started to drift (with a little help that is to say) in the first corner bur I managed to be first after that turn. Lateron in the race, I developed a water line problem and was forced to slow down since the engine was running at 100 deg.

I was second after Larsson and I went straight into the B finals. B finals: I had a great start and was first into the first corner. I felt that my car was still 100% ok after the problem That I had during the first race. I led the whole race and giving me a good advantage before having to take the outside, This is a new rule change. The track is constructed in such a way that one corner is constructed two ways and all competitors must take the outside corner once during the race. I earned the second position in the A finals.


1. Per Eklund
2. Michael Jernberg
3. Lars Larsson
4. Anders Carlsson
5. Tomas Andersson
6. Johan Nyström

Finals In the finals, three cars reached the first corner at the same time; Hansen’s Jernberg’s and Mine. Jernbergs car slid sideways in front of my car and then touched Hansens. This resulted in a big “bang” and they both went out of the circuit. The red flag was brought out and the race was stopped and a restart was called for. At the restart only three cars were able to take part since Hansen and Jernberg’s cars were too badly damaged to continue.

I immediately took the lead and held it until the finish. Winning the final and taking home fifteen points towards the Swedish national title. This was a tremendous of the new racing season. This win is just what I need to be 100% for the first round of the European Championships in the Check republic. 


 Eklund 15 points 
Larsson 12 points 
Sallström 10 points 
Hansen 9 points 
Jernberg 9 points 
Antonsson 7 points

1999 Season Opener (18-04-1999)

Eklund usually has good results at premier tournaments . The track in Tomelilla is among Per’s favorites and he usually always does very well at this bumpy track. The car is functioning better than expected and Per is confident that this will be a winning start. Per has had a fantastic success in the Swedish nationals (SM) during recent years winning SM-gold in 96 and 97 well as silver last year.

Season news 1999 tournament news 16-04-1999)

This year will Rallycross car be allowed to use “slicks” (Tires with out treads). During the last two years Rallycross teams were forced to use treaded tires. Better Competition: The biggest threat in the Swedish national (SM) series comes from Citroën’s Kenneth Hansen who has not won a SM title in many years. Last years champion Michael Jernberg has built a new Ford Focus and while he can’t be counted out, he is sure to have growing pins this year.

Austria cancelled: EM-premier is to be held in the Check republic May 8th-9th.

Modifications for the 1999 season Successful test-drive (15-04-1999)

Per was very happy, with his new car after a thorough day of testing in Skåne. The car has performed better than it did at last year at the Tomelilla track and the new motor is running very well. Engine: A new engine has been developed for this season's Competition car. Last years 2.3-liter engine will be replaced with a 2.0-liter power house. Last years car was very heavy, but this years liter body in combination with a lighter engine will Improve performance significantly.

Per won the 1997 Swedish National title in a 2.0-liter motor under the hood of his SAAB 900. He is very familiar with this engine and with the help of his friends at Trollspeed in Trollhättan, he has been able to trim up the engine to such an extent that it even out performs last year's 2.3-liter. Transmission: The reduced registrar of this year's 2.0-liter motor will allow per to use a six gear transmission another improvement over last year's 4 gear model. Other improvements: Per has worked hard to improve other aspects of his vehicle some of which include: A new front wheel geometry; a smaller wing, improved steering and suspension