Multiple World Championship winning team Hansen Motorsport is taking a fresh approach into its FIA World Rallycross Championship assault in 2023, the second year of the discipline’s new electric era.
The most successful team in rallycross history retains the services of former World Champion Timmy Hansen and European title-winner Kevin Hansen for an eighth season working together as team mates, racing the Swedish squad’s Peugeot 208 RX1e machines.
But, while the driver and car combination has a familiar look, behind the scenes there’s a fresh out-look for the squad’s second term in World RX’s electric transition, as the series once again goes global for 2023.
Having made its biggest ever investment to competing in top-flight rallycross in it’s over 30-year history for last season – with an increased focus on sustainability and environmental awareness – just making it to the grid for the inaugural round of the campaign was a significant achievement for privateer outfit Hansen Motorsport.
Podium contenders from the outset, the Hansen World RX Team hit the front of the field with victory in Spain amid nine rostrum appearances through the season last year, to finish second in both the Drivers’ and Teams’ standings.
Now, adding lessons learned from last year to an intense winter of analysis and development at Hansen Motorsport’s Götene workshops in Sweden – led by Kenneth and Susann Hansen – the squad is focused on channelling its new visions, ideas, inspiration and motivation into a 2023 title challenge.
The World RX season commences at Montalegre, Portugal (June 3-4) before traveling through Europe then concluding with flyaway races in South Africa and Asia (Hong Kong), the campaign finishing in November.
Kenneth Hansen, Team Principal Hansen World RX Team, said: “This season feels different and we are grateful to have Timmy and Kevin on board as drivers. Many people think that this is just how it is because we are family, but it is not granted that they will drive for us, so we are grateful that we have two very strong drivers in the team to try and fight for both titles this season.
“We have tried to be clever, to lift different stones to try and find small things here and there that can help us move forward in 2023. We have done many things; we don’t know if it will be enough but definitely, we will be stronger and faster than before. For sure our competitors will be stronger also, but we have done our homework as well as we believe we can with the recourses we have. We have also worked on the driver development which has been valuable and great fun too, so it will be really interesting to see what will happen this year.”
Kevin Hansen, Hansen World RX Team driver, said: “It’s really great to be confirmed for another season in World RX. Our team is the strongest and most historical team in rallycross history, so to continue our journey together is fantastic. Last season was a massive step forward for World Rallycross with the important switch to electric technology, and there has been a lot of hard work by the team back at the factory all winter to improve on what we achieved last season.
“With the analysis we have done, we hope to make a good step forward. You never know how far that will take you but with the brand-new calendar and the second year of this new electric era 2023 promises to be absolutely incredible. I’m more than excited to kick off and I feel like that I’m in a great place for a title challenge. We’ll put everything on the table and do everything we can to end up as World Champions by the end of the final round in Hong Kong.”
Timmy Hansen, Hansen World RX Team driver, said: “I expect this year to look quite different. Last year was all about finishing the cars in time to get them out on track to start the season, and a lot of things in all the teams was a bit rushed. Now we have more stability, being able to look properly into the year we have already done with these cars and try to improve.
“I expect that all the cars in the championship will be faster, and we’re right on board on that train pushing flat out to have the best possible package for this season – a fast car, strong team and Kevin and I being ready again to tackle the season as team mates again. It does feel very different to last year, I’m excited to get going and keen to see where we are at the first event in Portugal. Still, there’s loads of work to do until we get there and we’re working flat out.”