Newly-crowned FIA World Rallycross Champion Petter Solberg picked up the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ at last night’s prestigious Autosport Awards.
Presented by former Formula One World Champion Jenson Button, the World RX ace was awarded the accolade at a glittering ceremony held at The Grosvenor House Hotel on London’s Park Lane.
Solberg, who drove a Citroen DS3 Supercar for Team PSRX in 2014, claimed five outright victories in World RX including a win at the season-opener in Portugal and signing the year off in style with another victory in Argentina last week. The charismatic Norwegian is also the first ever driver to become an FIA World Champion in two different disciplines after winning both WRC and World RX.
“I had absolutely no idea I was going to win this award tonight – it wasn’t until Steve [Rider] started speaking about a driver who had won two different FIA World Championships that I realised he was actually talking about me,” grinned Solberg who has just returned from the FIA Awards Ceremony in Doha. “I love rallying and always will but World RX is really special – I mean, the RX Supercars go from zero to 60mph in less than two seconds, who couldn’t love that? This award is not just good for me, but it’s also huge news for the sport – I even shared a joke on stage with Jenson [Button] that I have a seat for him next year!”
Held annually since 1982, Autosport Awards brings together the who’s who from every discipline of the sport and this year welcomed 1,250 motorsport professionals including the 2014 Formula One World Champion, Lewis Hamilton.
Martin Anayi, World RX Managing Director for IMG Motorsports, concluded: “It’s fantastic that Petter has been formally recognised at one of the world’s most well-known motorsport ceremonies. I speak on behalf of the entire World RX family that it has been an absolute pleasure to have Petter compete in our Championship this year. He is very professional, works exceptionally hard and is a genuinely nice guy. The fact that Petter is the first person to become a winner in two different FIA World Championships is testament to not only his driving talent, but also his dedication – I cannot think of a more deserving person to win an achievement award. Congratulations to him and the entire PSRX Team on what has been a sensational year in World RX.”