The trophies say it all
When the dream has become reality. When the goal has been reached. When the trophy is finally in the right hands – your hands. There and then, on the stage in front of an entire motorsports world in Doha, it seriously hit me as to what I have managed – I am a World Champion!
I followed a new dream, I pushed difficulties aside, I never gave up and I got paid in something far more valuable than money.
Nothing can match the self-respect that is left after reaching the ultimate goal. Even if dreams are big or small; to set goals and to struggle to achieve them are among the most important challenges that exist in life.In my new sport there were many drivers who dreamed of becoming the first ever world champion. But in the end my team was working the hardest,we played the smartest and did most things right on the way towards the goal.
We made a plan and had small targets along the way during the season. We took calculated risks, we tried out new opportunities, we thought differently; We dreamed together and set common goals, and we reached our goals together.
In 2003 I didn’t get a trophy to take with me back home after the World Rally Championship prize giving. Just a couple of weeks ago at the combined World Championship and my 40th birthday party at home in my workshop, I received a copy of the 2003 trophy by my wife Pernilla and son Oliver. Through eleven years I had been a little sorry that I never got a trophy – the surprise by Oliver and Pernilla was absolutely fantastic!
To me the trophies say it all. I seldom look back at achievements now when I’m still in the game, I’m only looking forward. But one day even I will retire. Then I want to look back at what I’ve actually done. The most prestigious one in my 2014 collection is the Lifetime Achievement Award that I received at the Autosport Awards in London a couple of weeks ago.
To celebrate a world title is something very special. Eleven years passed before I got fulfilled the dream again. After the title race was settled in Italy in September, I decided to celebrate it in the best possible way with all my friends around me. We ended up at my workshop in Torsby with 220 invited friends, loved ones and acquaintances. Than was a very emotional evening.
It feels really different to wake in the morning now. As usual it happens early – around 7 o’clock. I normally go to the bathroom, look into the mirror and tell myself that I can reach any goal I set for myself if I work hard enough for it. Just like my dear mother taught me to do many years ago. The smile and self-image I get in return is worth every minute of struggle. The journey of life must also contain downs if one should be able to enjoy the highs to the fullest.
One more year is now behind us. It has been the most successful in my career. The World title, five race victories, nine podium finishes (from twelve races), 24 heat victories (from 72 in total) in the World RX – plus the Monster Super Charge award (first car into the first corner in the RX finals) and a further four triumphs in unofficial races. In addition my son Oliver had an equally good crosskart season with three titles (Northern European, Swedish and Norwegian champion) and nine single victories which means just as much to me.
My main plan for 2015 is to defend my World RX title. It is guaranteed be difficult to win again in 2015, but we have a good and developed plan to do it, and this year’s World Championship gold made me even hungrier for success.
Race victories and titles are doing something to me. I am 110 percent sure that this year’s season in rallycross has made me a better motorsport performer. Therefore I have also toyed with the idea of driving a couple of WRC rounds if a good enough offer arises. I would also like to measure forces against GRC drivers in the X Games – and I want to win Race of Champions individually. The experience in Barbados before Christmas was really great. What a wonderful event the Race of Champions is! Thanks to everyone in the organization and my colleagues who contributed to a life experience, and thanks to Tom Kristensen for a successful and very inspiring collaboration that led us to the top of the Nations Cup!
But on top of my list of wishes for 2015 is to retain my Championship crown in rallycross. Period!
In approximately 11 months we’ll know…
I wish you all the best in 2015.