Swedish driver Hansen was already a winner in the series arriving at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, but his previous success – in Abu Dhabi in 2019 – came as a result of a penalty for the on-track winner.
This time, the 23-year-old triumphed after a pulsating performance for the family-run Hansen World RX Team, as the two Peugeot 208s topped the intermediate classification.
See how Kevin Hansen triumphed in Barcelona in the video below:
Finals – Spain
The finals offer pure action with three races of World RX and the finals of the new electric category RX 2e.
Behind them, a threat was lurking in the shape of three-time world champion Johan Kristoffersson but the KYB EKS JC ace was left on the back foot as a Q1 disqualification – after his data-logger was found not to have been connected – left him down in an uncharacteristic 15th position. Proving why he's the most crowned competitor in World Championship history, the Swede went on to win all three subsequent qualifiers to haul himself up to sixth place after Q4.
That set the scene for a dazzling duel in the second semi-final, as Kristoffersson tried every which way to pass Kevin over the last two laps. However, the Peugeot driver refused to yield setting up an all-Hansen front row for the final following Timmy's victory in the first semi-final.
In the final, after gaining a spot to third at the start, Kristoffersson then deployed an early joker-lane tactic to try to get the undercut on the Hansen duo, but found himself covered by Timmy. The pair emerged from the joker behind GRX-SET World RX Team's Krisztián Szabó, though, and the subsequent delay – allied to a rapid turn-of-speed from Kevin – enabled the latter to sweep around the outside of his two countrymen on lap four to assume a lead he wouldn't relinquish.
This means so much to me – my first proper World RX win. I've been waiting for this for a long time
"This means so much to me – my first proper World RX win. I've been waiting for this moment for a long time and I'm so, so happy," said an emotional Kevin Hansen. "I knew from pre-season testing that I had a great car underneath me and I've worked so hard to up my game, and that has paid off. When I was standing on the podium, I looked to my left and to my right and thought, 'these guys have won four world championships between them and I've just beaten them both'. That was such a cool feeling."
"I'm super proud of Kevin – I know how hard he's working and how much he's improving, and he did a fantastic job." said Timmy Hansen. "Both of us kept our cool through qualifying and we had a plan for how we wanted to come out of the first corner in the final, which we executed perfectly."
Following a difficult weekend, Kristoffersson promised to come out fighting during round two in Sweden. He said: "If you'd offered me a podium after the penalty in Q1, I would definitely have taken it. The team has done a great job and the car has been fantastic, so we just need to keep our heads up and make sure we stay on our toes. The fightback begins at Höljes."
The 2021 FIA World Rallycross Championship campaign next moves on to the iconic Höljes circuit for the World RX of Sweden on August 20–22. The event will feature a bumper bill of action with all four series – World RX, RX2e, Euro RX3 and the seasonal debut of Euro RX1.
Every race of the nine-round 2021 FIA World Rallycross Championship will be broadcast live on Red Bull TV.
World RX of Catalunya final result
- Kevin Hansen (SWE) – Hansen World RX Team 6 laps
- Timmy Hansen (SWE) – Hansen World RX Team +1.141s
- Johan Kristoffersson (SWE) – KYB EKS JC +2.394s
- Krisztián Szabó (HUN) – GRX-SET World RX Team +3.499s
- René Münnich (DEU) – ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport +7.259s
- Kevin Abbring (NLD) – Unkorrupted +9.782s
Откъс от статията