Saab and the 2001 Race of Champions

It’s easy to forget that Saab had some high-level participation in motorsport until quite recently. Per Eklund won Pikes Peak only 5 years ago, and a year before that, Saab 9-3s were being used by the world’s best drivers as part of the Race of Champions.

The ROC is an event that draws together drivers from various disciplines and eras and tries figure out who’s the best of the best. The world’s premiere track and offroad drivers compete on parallel curcuits using the same cars until the best in each discipline is decided. Then they race off against each other.

In 2001, Saab 9-3s were used during one of the rally stages. Drivers included Marcus Gronholm, Fernando Alonso, Valentino Rossi, Johnny Herbert, Robby Gordon and Australia’s own Troy Bayliss. And in a special reunion, Stig Blomqvist and Per Eklund both drove in the legend’s section.

I got a CD of photos in today from the 2001 event and instead of chewing up my own bandwidth I thought I’d throw them all into a slideshow and use Google’s bandwidth instead.

They really do need to get back into this stuff in a big way. On a big stage. Really.


  1. Ivan, as I’m sure Swade is busy working on the next post (or his day job!), I’ll answer for him. That song was released in 1997 and is from Blur’s fifth album, the self-titled “Blur”. The track is called “Song 2”.

    Coincidentally, BMW used this song in one of their high-budget webfilms starring Clive Owen, called “The Hire”. In this particular “episode” Owen’s character was driving Madonna’s character to a film premiere like a madman through the streets of Hollywood while the song played. I dislike BMW as much as the next SAABophile, but these films were very entertaining. I bought them on DVD!

    If you like Blur, you’ll probably really like singer Damon Albarn’s follow-up project Gorillaz. If you like Gorillaz, you might be interested in his current project, “The Good, The Bad, and The Queen” with Simon Tong (The Verve), Paul Simonon (The Clash), and Tony Allen (Fela Kuti and Africa 70 ).

  2. Song 2 – I’d forgotten about that one.

    If you’re a Blur newbie, the ‘Blur’ album is a good one, but I’ve always been partial to ‘Parklife’ as the definitive Blur experience. Damon Albarn was so much better before he tried to outgun the big boys.

  3. I am big fan of many bri-ish bands. Favorite is Radiohead. Followed closely by Muse, Oasis, Muse, Arctic Monkeys,Muse, REM, and others.

    I get up when I want except on wednesdays when I get rudely awakened by the dustman… lol!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *