The four drivers of Lestrup Racing Team have completed more than 1000 laps over four days of successful but challenging official STCC TCR Scandinavia pre-season test days at Knutstorp and Ljungbyhed in Sweden.
“This has certainly been a baptism of fire for our first outing with our expanded four-car team with torrential rain, crashes but most importantly – plenty of test laps,” said team co-owner Fredrik Lestrup.
“Everyone has performed really well and while it was a shame that Robin’s test got cut short after his crash, he showed promising pace, as did Rob, Oliver and Mikael.”
Oliver Söderström topped the first test day at Knutstorp, the only day held in dry conditions.
“It has been four intense days that have been really positive. I had the pace in dry conditions straight away, while I had more to work on in the wet. So it has been really rewarding to get three days in wet conditions and I felt much more comfortable at the end of the final day,” said Oliver Söderström.
Reigning STCC champion Rob Huff was right at the top of all four test days, his first outing in the Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR since the season finale at Knutstorp last year.
“It’s been four quite positive and good days, just nice to get back in the car again. We have learned a lot and got to test what we wanted, getting the answers we wanted. Now we obviously need to get everything ready for the season opener,” said Rob Huff.
Mikael Karlsson got his first laps with the team and was feeling buoyant after the four days of tough testing.
“We have gained a lot of valuable data and it has really been a different feeling in the car with different settings compared to what I drove last year. I’ve never driven quicker around Knutstorp than I did during the dry first test day. The feeling is good ahead of our coming challenges,” said Mikael Karlsson.
Robin Knutsson, who will make his STCC debut for the team this year, showed promising form during the first two days at Knutstorp while his test at Ljungbyhed was cut short following a high-speed off.
“It was a hard hit, but I feel ok and everything looked good at the hospital check-up. A huge thanks to everyone in the rescue staff and the team for their efforts. I’m really keen to get going again and I am happy that we got so many laps during the first days. It feels like we have taken big steps forward already,” said Robin Knutsson.
Next up for Lestrup Racing Team is the STCC TCR Scandinavia season opener at Ljungbyhed on June 4-5.