Mattias Ekström/Emil Bergkvist (Sweden), Stéphane Peterhansel/Edouard Boulanger (France) and Carlos Sainz/Lucas Cruz (Spain) will contest for Audi in a world’s toughest convene from Jan 2 to 14, 2022. “It’s no deceit to pronounce of a ‘dream team’,” says Julius Seebach, Managing Director of Audi Sport GmbH and obliged for motorsport. “Stéphane is a many successful Dakar motorist of all time. Carlos is a mixed Dakar leader and World Rally champion. With Mattias, we already distinguished many Audi successes in a past. He is one of a world’s many versatile drivers. In further to a lot of speed, they are all adding an impassioned volume of imagination and proclivity to a team. The same goes for their co-drivers, who play an increasingly critical purpose in a Dakar Rally.”
“In a end, a drivers and co-drivers make a disproportion during a Dakar Rally,” says Andreas Roos, who is obliged for a bureau motorsport commitments during Audi Sport. “The fact that we will have 3 motorist teams during a unequivocally top turn is reassuring. We can put a check symbol behind this point. Now it’s adult to us to finish a growth of a innovative automobile and flog off a appetite array in cross-country rallying in January.”
“At a Dakar Rally, teamwork and reliabilty are crucial,” says Sven Quandt, group principal of Q Motorsport. “You need a well-bonded team, a super arguable automobile and arguable motorist teams. You can’t henceforth expostulate during a extent in a Dakar Rally. The right plan is crucial. I’m unequivocally happy that we will have 3 eminent and clever teams competing for us. We know their qualities unequivocally well.”
Mattias Ekström (42) has spent roughly his whole career underneath a ensign of a 4 rings, quite in a DTM, where he won a pretension twice with Audi (2004 and 2007). The Swede underlined his flexibility by winning a World Rallycross Championship in 2016, as good as successful stints in a World Rally Championship, NASCAR and in Australian Supercars. In 2021, he is competing for CUPRA in a new Extreme E electric off-road series. Earlier this year, he also done his entrance in a Dakar Rally.
“The Dakar will unequivocally be one of a many sparkling adventures of my career,” says Ekström. “To be means to tackle this sparkling plan together with a team, with that we distinguished my biggest successes, is fantastic. Although I’ll be branch 43 this year, we feel like a youth compared to Carlos and Stéphane. In this sport, we need a lot of knowledge in all areas. we still have a lot to learn, though I’m unequivocally looking brazen to it.”
Mattias Ekström’s co-driver is his compatriot Emil Bergkvist (26), who used to be a convene motorist himself. “I come from a same segment as Mattias. He has always been an statue for me, each motorsport fan in Sweden knows him,” says Bergkvist. “When we stopped driving, we called him and asked if we could work for his team. Now, we am his co-driver. It’s an respect for me to be means to work with Mattias and be partial of this good plan during Audi.”