WTCC winner Rydell signs off from racing
"It’s been fantastic years as a driver"
He won five rounds of the FIA World Touring Car Championship, took four poles, set five fastest laps, led 40 laps and, in June 2015, celebrated WTCC start number 100.
Now, aged 48, Rickard Rydell has taken the decision to retire from driving following a racing career spanning 39 years. Instead, he will coach GP2 driver Gustav Malja, provide expert TV commentary for Viasat Motor and continue to work in his family’s flower business in his native Sweden.
“I have decided to not compete in 2016 and this also means I’m retiring from racing,” said Rydell. “I was a works driver for 20 consecutive years, and I’m very privileged and proud to have represented brands like Toyota, Volvo, SEAT and Aston Martin in major championships and races. It was also fun to come home to Sweden and STCC after 21 seasons of international racing.
“It’s been fantastic years as a driver. Now I can look forward to other projects and roles both inside and outside motorsport.”
Rydell’s last WTCC appearance was at Circuit Paul Ricard in France last June when he finished P11 and P10 in the two races driving a Honda Racing team Sweden Civic (pictured). He had been due to contest a full season in 2015 but illness and car availability issues ruled out an ever-present campaign.
Despite Rydell’s retirement, there will still be a strong Swedish representation in this year’s WTCC with Polestar Cyan Racing entering Thed Björk and Fredrik Ekblom in a brace of Volvo S60 Polestar TC1s.
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