- October 06, 1970
- Stcc – Scandinavian Touring Car Championship
- West Coast Racing
The Swedish racing driver Fredrik Ekblom is one of the best Scandinavian touring car racers who is among the front-runners in the regional and national touring car competitions for last twenty years. He was the Swedish touring car champion three times (1998, 2003 and 2007) and the TTA-Racing Elite League champion in 2012, finishing eleven more times among the top 5 drivers. He made it with different manufacturers - BMW, Audi, Volkswagen and Volvo.
He spent one full season in the European Touring Car Championship with BMW and one season in the World Touring Car Championship with Volvo, but without notable results.
Earlier in a career, during the 1990s, Ekblom was the open-wheel racing competitor, gaining some success in the Formula 3 and Formula 3000, even recording three starts in the CART Indy Car World Series between 1994 and 1996. He also participated three times at 24 hours of Le Mans.
Two-time championship runner-up early in a career
Born in October 1970, in Kumla, Ekblom started a career in the 1989 Swedish Formula 3 Championship, driving a Reynard-Volkswagen. In his rookie season, Ekblom finished third in the championship, progressing to the second place in 1990, behind Niclas Jönsson.
The next step was the British Formula 3000, in which he was driving Lola-Cosworth for Team AJS, finishing again as the championship runner-up, losing a title to Paul Warwick.
Two seasons in the Indy Lights Championship
In 1992, Ekblom's single-seater career continued in North America, where he made two starts in the Indy Lights Championship for Bradley Motorsports. He reached a podium at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, finishing second.
In 1993, Ekblom spent a full season in the Indy Lights, driving for ZW Motorsports. He started in eleven races and scored one podium to finish seventh in the points.
Three Indy Car starts in three years
In the next three years, Ekblom made only three starts in the CART Indy Car World Series. In 1994, he passed the rookie orientation program for the Indianapolis 500 but skipped the race. He drove for McCormack Motorsports at Detroit instead, finishing 15th.
In 1995, Ekblom joined AJ Foyt's team in the last round at Las Vegas, finishing 19th in the #14 Lola-Ford. And finally, in 1996, he made a last Indy Car start in the US 500 at Michigan International Speedway with Walker Racing in the #15 Reynard-Cosworth.
Second place and class win at 1995 Daytona 24 Hours
During his American years, Ekblom spent a part of the season with Brix Racing in the 1995 IMSA Championship, driving the #2 Spice BDG-02 WSC prototype. He was second overall and winner of the WSC class at 1995 Daytona 24 Hours, sharing a car with Jeremy Dale and Jay Cochran.
They were seventh at Sebring 12 Hours and third at Watkins Glen 3 Hours. Ekblom finished 11th in the final championship standings.
Three starts at Le Mans 24 Hours
Ekblom continued with sports car activities in 1997, returning to Daytona with Courage Competition but also making a debut at Le Mans 24 Hours with the same team. At Daytona, he didn't finish the race, at Le Mans, he was 16th overall and 5th in the LMP class. His co-drivers in the #10 Courage C36-Porsche were Jean-Louis Ricci and Jean-Paul Libert.
In 1998, Ekblom returned to Le Mans with Courage Competition, driving the #14 Courage C51-Nissan. He, Patrice Gay and Tetsuya Tsuchiya retired after 126 laps. The last Le Mans attempt followed in 1999 with Nissan Motorsports in the #21 Courage C52-Nissan. Marc Goossens and Didier Cottaz were his partners, they finished 8th.
1998 - Swedish Touring Car champion in his rookie season
In 1998, Ekblom turned his focus to touring car racing, entering a full season of the Swedish Touring Car Championship with BMW Dealer Team/West Coast Racing. He was driving the #11 BMW 320i, winning three races in his rookie season and taking the championship title.
Ekblom stayed one more season with the same team, winning three times in the #1 BMW and finishing second in the final standings, six points behind Kristoffersson Motorsport's Mattias Ekström.
Ekblom joined Kristoffersson Motorsport in 2000
Ekblom joined Kristoffersson Motorsport in 2000 to drive the #2 Audi A4 Quattro. He was a race winner seven times but lost a title to Nissan's Tommy Rustad.
Besides racing in the STCC, Ekblom had a one-off appearance in the SportsRacing World Cup at Kyalami, driving a Lola-Nissan for Team Sweden, together with Stanley Dickens. They were 6th overall and the winners of the SRL class.
2001 American Le Mans Series season with BMW
In 2001, Ekblom halted his touring car career and returned to North America, participating full season in the American Le Mans Series with BMW, driving the #43 BMW M3 GTR for Schnitzer Motorsport. His co-driver was Dirk Muller.
A part of the championship were two European races, at Donington Park and Jarama. Ekblom and Muller scored their only victory at Jarama. The Swede ended seventh in the points.
2002 European Touring Car Championship season with BMW
Ekblom stayed with BMW in 2002 but changed a racing discipline. He was competing in the European Touring Car Championship in the #10 BMW 320i of Bart Mampaey's BMW Team Belgium.
After scoring three podiums over the season, at Anderstorp, Spa and Estoril, Ekblom finished sixth in the final ETCC standings.
Second STCC title with Kristoffersson's Audi
In 2003, Ekblom made a return to the Swedish Touring Car Championship and also returned to Kristoffersson Motorsport. Driving the #10 Audi A4, he won two times and captured his second STCC title.
Ekblom stayed with Kristoffersson Motorsport until 2006, continuing to drive an Audi A4. In 2004, he was the race winner two times, finishing third in the championship. He was without wins in 2005 and 2006, dropping to 6th and 4th place respectively.
Ekblom was the first three-time STCC champion
In 2007, it was a time for another change. In a fact, it was a return, as he joined West Coast Racing to drive the #4 BMW 320si. Two race wins were enough for him to take his third STCC title in a career, becoming the first ever three-time STCC champion.
In 2007, Ekblom also participated in three rounds of the FIA World Touring Car Championship, driving the #14 BMW 320si for BMW Team UK in Sweden, Italy and Macau. He earned one point with a ninth-place finish in the second race at Macau Guia circuit.
Class victory at 2008 Nurburgring 24 Hours
In 2008, Ekblom was again in the #1 car, trying to defend STCC title in a BMW 320si. He won two times, losing a title to Richard Göransson.
The season 2008 was also marked by his successful appearance at 24 hours of Nurburgring. He was joined by Augusto Farfus, Jorg Muller and Stian Sorlie in the #261 BMW 320d, taking a victory in the S1 class for diesel-powered cars.
Three seasons with Volkswagen
For the 2009 STCC season, Ekblom changed a manufacturer, driving a Volkswagen Scirocco for Team Biogas.se. The first season with Volkswagen was tough, he finished 13th in the points without wins or podiums.
Next year, he was again among the front-runners, winning three times and finishing third in the Swedish Touring Car Championship. That year, he also participated in the Scandinavian Touring Car Cup, finishing third after eight races.
In 2011, the Scandinavian Touring Car Championship was formed. Ekbom has won three times in the #14 Volkswagen Scirocco, losing a championship by just two points behind Rickard Rydell.
TTA-Racing Elite League champion with Volvo
After spending years with German brands, Ekblom finally joined Swedish manufacturer Volvo in 2012. He competed in the TTA-Racing Elite League, which was formed as a breakaway from the Scandinavian Touring Car Championship. The silhouette cars made by Volvo, Saab, BMW and Citroen were used.
Ekblom has won two times in the #11 Volvo S60 TTA, easily winning his fourth touring car title in a career.
Three more STCC seasons with Volvo
In 2013, the Scandinavian Touring Car Championship took over the TTA silhouette cars regulations, so Volvo entered the championship with S60 car. Ekblom was driving the #11 but failed to win a race, finishing fifth in the points.
He stayed for two more years in the STCC with Volvo Polestar Racing. In 2014, he won three times to finish third in the championship. In 2015, he was a race winner four times but missed the title again, finishing second behind teammate Thed Bjork.
2016 WTCC season with Volvo
In 2016, both Ekblom and Bjork were recruited by Volvo Cyan Racing to compete in the World Touring Car Championship. Bjork stayed in the championship for a full season, Ekblom was replaced after six rounds by Robert Dahlgren, returning one more time to a car for Chinese round.
In fourteen races over seven rounds in the #61 Volvo S60 Polestar TC1, Ekblom's best result was the fourth place in the first race at Hungaroring.
Ekblom rejoined Kristoffersson Motorsport in 2017
In 2017, the Scandinavian Touring Car Championship adopted TCR regulations and Ekblom joined Volkswagen Dealer Team Sweden, operated by Kristoffersson Motorsport, to drive the #30 Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR.
Ekblom has won five times but lost a title to Robert Dahlgren in a Seat Leon TCR.