ROC Nations Cup victory for Team Nordic's Kristoffersson and Kristensen
Denmark’s Tom Kristensen and Sweden’s Johan Kristoffersson, united under the banner of Team Nordic, are the winners of the Nations Cup at Race of Champions that takes place this weekend at Foro Sol, an amphitheatrical part of Mexico City’s Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez.
‘Mr. Le Mans’ Kristensen and reigning FIA World Rallycross champion Kristoffersson prevailed in the final duel against the Team Germany, the eight-time winners of Nations Cup, represented by Sebastian Vettel and Mick Schumacher.
For Tom Kristensen, in his record-equalling 15th participation at Race of Champions, it’s the third win in the ROC Nations Cup. He previously won in 2014 together with Petter Solberg and in 2005 together with Mattias Ekström.
“That was a very tight fight, as you saw with my race with Sebastian. Then Mick had a brilliant fight with Johan that took it to the decider. He should be very proud of himself on his first visit to the Race Of Champions – and I’m always proud any time I beat a Schumacher.
So we are both very proud to take Team Nordic to the win today. It was Johan who brought us into the final, because he was very strong early on. He started the day better and I finished the day better, and it worked out in the end. The Mexican crowd has a lot of passion and we loved being here. This was my 15th ROC appearance, equalling Stig Blomqvist’s record. I hope Stig is watching it somewhere and I hope he’s a bit proud of me even if I’m not a Swede,” Tom Kristensen commented.
Kristoffersson added: “The Race Of Champions is a tough event – to work all the way through the group stages then go to the semi-finals and final. We had some crucial victories along the way and then Tom brought home the biggest trophy. It’s my first time in Mexico and I’m really happy to be here, and to be a part of the event against some of the best drivers in the world. I think it will be a long night but now we have one trophy, we can be a bit more relaxed about the individual event tomorrow. So let’s see what happens but first we have to get through tonight.”
On a sunny afternoon in the Mexican capital, legends from many of the world’s biggest motorsport series teamed up in pairs to battle for national and regional pride. They raced a mix of cars – including the VUHL 05 ROC Edition 2019, Ariel Atom Cup, Stadium Super Truck, RX Supercar Lite, Speed SXS UTV, KTM X-Bow and ROC Car – on a purpose-built pursuit track.
The home fans enjoyed cheering on Team Mexico’s F1 star Esteban Gutierrez and 2018 Indy Lights Champion Patricio O’Ward all the way to the semi-finals, before they were defeated by Team Nordic. Team Brazil (Helio Castroneves and Lucas di Grassi) also made it as far as the semi-final before they were beaten by Team Germany.
Ten teams participated in the ROC Nations Cup. Besides semifinalists, the other participants were Team France (Pierre Gasly and Loïc Duval), Team Infinitum Mexico (Memo Rojas and Benito Guerra), Team Sim Racing All Stars (eROC World Final winners Enzo Bonito and James Baldwin), Team Telcel Mexico (Daniel Suarez and ROC Mexico kart race winner Ruben Garcia Jr), Team Great Britain (David Coulthard and Andy Priaulx) and Team USA (Ryan Hunter-Reay and Josef Newgarden).
There is plenty more action to come in Mexico City on Sunday as the drivers will race individually against each other in the Race Of Champions.
Photos: Race of Champions,