4th race of RX Academy on Ice -series was competed in Gol Norway. Sami-Matti Trogen's season has improved from race to race and in Gol he got a jackpot.
Series started in the beginning of February from Östersund Sweden where Trogen's lack of experience with spiked tires was clearly visible. Youngster started to find his pace in the 2nd competition in Höljes Sweden but still had a trouble with starts. Trogen took a big step forward in 3rd race in Ål Norway by having good starts and finishing third. Gol race finished four-race long winter series and Trogen was able to secure a victory by using an experience from previous races.
Trogen was 4th overall in series and Norwegian Simon Syversen was twelve points ahead.
– I have good feeling about Norway. I will concentrate to starts, enjoy racing and try to catch up Syversen as i am interested about third place, Trogen told before the race.
Gol presented an amazing atmosphere for racing. Icy motor track surrounded by high mountains was slower than previous tracks but much more technical. Trogen was twice second and won on last heat to secure first place after heats.
– First two heats went well despite of starts but timing of joker laps was spot on and i was able to finish second on both. In the last heat i decided to use different tactic in start and "leaned" more against clutch. That worked well securing a victory.
There was two semi-finals and three fastest from both reached the final.
– I had a pole position for semi-final, used same start tactic as in last heat and was able to get really good start. Track was already in pretty bad shape but i was able to win.
Trogen started final from pole position, next to Estonian Marko Muru. Simon Syversen, third in oveall had also made his way to final and started from second row.
– Start was again very good but very even with other drivers. Track had further worn down so i needed all focus on driving. I was leading three laps until on fourth i missed tire grooves and noticed that Muru is catching up. I took a joker lap on last lap and thought that now Muru will pass me but he did not. I was able to keep leading position after joker lap and reach goal as a winner. I made a spontaneous celebration in cockpit!
Battle of third place in overall was won by Norwegian by three points.
– In the end winter went well even though beginning was a bit difficult but i finished with a victory. It felt great after two disappointing trips in the beginning of season. I was also happy to notice good atmosphere in races as well as big investment of RX Academy and organizers with warm tents on pit and internet-tv. Only thing what bothers me a bit is that i was not able to pass Syversen in overall standings. After all, I got valuable lessons for summer and then i will be faster than ever, finishes Trogen.
Winter series is now done and RX Academy will continue at spring. Series consists of five races from which three will be raced in Finland and two in Sweden. Trogen will also have seven race weekends in RX2-series which is competed in same events with WRX. Season starts mid-May with Belgium event.
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Text: Toni Lönnroos