Thed Björk ended the 2016 FIA World Touring Car Championship season in Qatar with his second podium finish of the season for Polestar Cyan Racing, climbing into the top ten of the drivers’ championship standings.
The four-time STCC champion crossed the line of the final race in second place, a mere second behind race winner Mehdi Bennani, after keeping the Citroën driver under pressure throughout the race.
“The team gave me a great car and I had the pace on Mehdi, but he did a really good job with no mistakes and left no room for me to pass. While I, of course, wanted our second win, this result really underlines our progress in the final part of the season with a victory, two podiums and two Q3 sessions in the past two race weekends,” says Björk.
Team mate Robert Dahlgren had two tough races, with the second ending in retirement, but managed to secure his first world championship points of 2016 in the first race after achieving the seventh position.
“Result-wise I am not pleased; we had the pace for more. But I am very happy to see our development work taking us upwards in the field. The team did a great job with the car this weekend and I can’t wait to get back behind the wheel again,” says Dahlgren.
As the first in a long-term WTCC programme for Polestar Cyan Racing, the 2016 season was intended to be a learning period – but it still resulted in one victory, two podium finishes, three Q3 sessions, five top-five finishes and 23 top-ten finishes.
“To end the season with a main race podium finish is a morale-booster that everyone in the team wanted. Thed did an amazing job, fighting hard to catch up with the leader and tackle the win. This learning year has definitely left us with a taste for more and exceeded all of our expectations,” says Alexander Murdzevski Schedvin, Head of Motorsport at Polestar.
WTCC Race of Qatar
Circuit: Losail International Circuit
Length: 5.38 km
Lap record (WTCC): 2:01.628 (Lopez)
Race 1 – Top 5
1 Gabriele Tarquini Lada Vesta 14 laps
2 Tom Chilton Citroën C-Elysée +6.617
3 Rob Huff Honda Civic +7.246
4 Yvan Muller Citroën C-Elysée +8.968
5 Norbert Michelisz Honda Civic +9.648
6 Thed Björk Volvo S60 +10.137
7 Robert Dahlgren Volvo S60 +11.108
Race 2 – Top 5
1 Mehdi Bennani Citroën C-Elysée 15 laps
2 Thed Björk Volvo S60 +1.176
3 José María López Citroën C-Elysée +4.815
4 Norbert Michelisz Honda Civic +10.575
5 Tiago Monteiro Honda Civic +11.827
DNF Robert Dahlgren Volvo S60
1 José María López Citroën C-Elysée 381 points
2 Yvan Muller Citroën C-Elysée 257 (-124)
3 Tiago Monteiro Honda Civic 214 (-167)
4 Norbert Michelisz Honda Civic 212 (-169)
5 Medhi Bennani Citroën C-Elysée 206 (-175)
10 Thed Björk Volvo S60 117 (-264)
13 Fredrik Ekblom Volvo S60 45 (-336)
15 Néstor Girolami Volvo S60 12 (-369)
19 Robert Dahlgren Volvo S60 6 (-375)