Red Bull GRC 2017 Season Preview: Sebastian Eriksson
TEAM: #93 Honda Red Bull Olsbergs MSE Civic Coupe
2016 RESULTS: 11 starts, 4 podiums, 3 heat wins; 341 points, 7th overall (Supercar)
2016 IN REVIEW: A year after finishing second overall in points, Eriksson traded in the trusty Ford Fiesta ST for the brand new Honda Civic Coupe as he stuck with Olsbergs MSE for another year. The first final of the year ended in flames, but just 24 hours later, Eriksson earned his first of four podiums on the season. Unfortunately it was that kind of year overall; six finishes of sixth or better were paired with five results of ninth or worse, leading to the drop to seventh in points.
WHAT’S NEW: Now boasting a year’s worth of development, the Civic Coupe is ready to challenge for this year’s Red Bull GRC title. But Eriksson will be the only driver on OMSE’s three-car squad to have been driving the car since its very first race in Phoenix. Mitchell deJong got behind the wheel for the first time in last year’s finale in Los Angeles, while Oliver Eriksson will be moving up from GRC Lites and make his first career Supercar start in Memphis.
OUTLOOK: Expect a lot more ups than downs this year. When Eriksson was on in 2016, he was really on—look at Seattle, where wins in the second round of heats and semifinals put him alongside Tanner Foust on the final grid and led him to an easy second place. With two rookie teammates, he’ll be looked at as the steady veteran presence that guides the team back to the top step of the podium, and maybe even higher than his runner-up finish two seasons ago.
Photo credit: Larry Chen