Xpress arjeplog web 11 2016

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Eric Gallardo, Lapland Ice Driving.

Citroen DS3 WRC rally car. Photo: Félix Macías.

An extraordinary driving experience The noise is deafening when he starts the engine and I’m glad that we’re wearing hearing protection. I am with Eric Gallardo in a Citroen DS3 WRC rally car. We are on the “Paul Ricard Track” on Lake Uddjaur. I am strapped in by the four point seatbelt and all I can hear is my heart beat over the muffled sound of the engine. It’s exciting but at the same time a little scary. But there was nothing to worry about. It was really, really fun inspite of Eric exceeding 200km/ hr on the straights, and I felt safe and secure. This car was built for the world rally team. It's based upon the Citroen DS3 road car and replaces the highly successful C4 WRC. It is built to the new

World Rally Car regulations. The engine has been specifically developed for this car and is powered by a turbo charged 1.6 litre engine, an exquisitly crafted four cylinder 1600CC direct injection engine. Eric tells me that the car was brought to Arjeplog- Lapland Ice Driving, for a weekend event. The running cost of the vehicle is about 1,500sek/km. As the track is 4km long, every lap costs about 6,000 sek. But on the other hand, the car has been driven by world famous Former French driver Sebastiean Loeb. As we rolled into the pits after finishing our two laps, it was a little disappointing that Sebastian Loeb wasn't there to greet us. But driving with Eric Gallardo was no less a memorable and extraordinary experience.

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