Motorlotteriet Swedish Grand Prix Preview

Heavy leaden skies greeted the twenty three drivers that arrived at the Riddarfjarden located right in the heart of Stockholm city centre. Amongst the largest fleet that has ever gathered for the opening round of the UIM Formula 2 World Championship are seven drivers making their series debut.

One of those drivers will have the added pressure of racing at his home Grand Prix. Having secured the UIM F4S World Championship here last year Swede Tobias Soderling, who has joined Johan Osterberg’s team, knows all about performing in front of his home fans.

“Sure, there is always pressure at your home event” he said, “but I’m very new to F2 so people need to understand that I will be very pleased if I manage to finish in the top fifthteen. Two weeks ago we raced at Grisslinge near Stockholm and there is no better way to get the feel of a new boat than in a racing environment. I’m not going to take any chances here but I will do the best I can do.”

Another driver making his F2 debut is Tobias Muthe-Kaas from Norway. Two years ago he competed in the F4S support series in the UIM F1H2O World Championship, racing for Team Nautica. His mentor Marit Stromoy, whom he has known now for thirteen years, feels now the time is right for him to race F2.

“To be honest we are looking at this event as a test session” said Muthe-Kaas. “Twenty two boats lining up alongside me is heavy, but you have to learn somewhere.”

Fresh from her success at the Rouen 24 Hour race is another F2 debutant, Simone Schuft, racing with Rupert Temper’s team. She first saw Formula Two some eleven years ago and never imagined that one day she would be taking part in the World Championship.

“When the plane touched down at Stockholm Airport I started to get really excited” said Schuft. “I really want to put my Rouen experience to good use here, plus I’m very curious to see how I measure up against the vastly experience guys who have been racing F2 for several year now.”

Making it four female drivers racing this weekend is Italian Chiara Rossi. She spent last year racing a BaBa hull in the Italian Championship and fresh from competing two weeks ago in Boretto, where she was extremely competitive, is confident that she is not just here making up the numbers.

In a change from previous years, qualifying for the Motorlotteriet Swedish Grand Prix gets under way on Friday afternoon, (Free Practice at 15:00) and that’s when we will see who looks most likely to challenge the local hero, current UIM F2 World Champion Erik Stark for that number one spot.

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