Björn Waldegård

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Björn Waldegård
FranzWurzBjörnWaldegård1984.jpg
In rallycross rivals but in rallying a team: Waldegård and co-driver Franz Wurz during the 1984 Austrian Jänner-Rallye.
Personal information
Nationality Sweden Swedish
Born (1943-11-12) 12 November 1943 (age 70)
World Rally Championship record
Active years 1973–1992
Teams BMW, Toyota, Lancia, Ford, Mercedes-Benz, Fiat
Rallies 95
Championships 1 (1979)
Rally wins 16
Podiums 35
Stage wins 290
Total points 428
First rally 1973 Monte Carlo Rally
First win 1975 Swedish Rally
Last win 1990 Safari Rally
Last rally 1992 Safari Rally

Björn Waldegård (born 12 November 1943 at Solna) from Rimbo is a former Swedish rally driver, and the winner of the inaugural World Rally Championship for drivers in 1979. His Swedish nickname is "Walle".

Career[edit]

Waldegård's career spans four decades; he debuted in 1962 and, after winning the Swedish Rally Championship in 1967 and '68, continued to compete at the top level until 1992 when a broken arm suffered during a crash in the 1992 Safari Rally forced his retirement. His first international victory, at the wheel of a Porsche 911, came on the 1969 Monte Carlo Rally, while his last came for Toyota on the 1990 Safari. It made him the oldest driver to win a World Rally Championship event, a record he still retains.

In the mid 1970s Waldegård took part in the newborn European Championship for Rallycross Drivers with a privately entered Porsche Carrera RSR. His best overall result was to become the Runner-up to Austrian Franz Wurz, father of Alexander Wurz, of the 1974 Embassy European Rallycross Championship.

The Alitalia-backed Lancia team of the 1970s frequently choose between star drivers Waldegård and Italian frontrunner Sandro Munari. Waldegård and Munari came head to head in the 1976 Rallye Sanremo. Waldegård had a four-second lead over Munari entering the final stage, only to be forced to squander that advantage in keeping with the team's hopes for an 'equal' shootout. Waldegård, however, emerged as victor by four seconds, having disobeyed team orders and overtaken Munari – as a result, Waldegård left Lancia and joined Ford in late 1976.

Driving Ford Escort RS1800 models, Waldegård won three of the world's most punishing rallies in 1977; the East African Safari Rally, the Acropolis Rally, and the RAC Rally.

He was later victor in the inaugural World Rally Championship series in 1979 for Ford and Mercedes-Benz, beating Hannu Mikkola in the final round at the Rallye Côte d'Ivoire in the Ivory Coast, by finishing second behind his rival.

Waldegård at the 2008 Colin McRae Forest Stages.

In September 2008, Waldegård took part in the Colin McRae Forest Stages Rally, a round of the Scottish Rally Championship centred in Perth in Scotland. He was one of a number of ex-world champions to take part in the event in memory of McRae, who died in 2007. On the event he drove a Porsche 911.

International victories[edit]

Björn Waldegård, International victories
1969 38ème Rallye Automobile de Monte-Carlo Porsche 911 S
1970 39ème Rallye Automobile de Monte-Carlo Porsche 911 S
1970 21st International Swedish Rally Porsche 911 S
1970 41. Österreichische Alpenfahrt Porsche 911 S

WRC Victories[edit]

 #  Event Season Co-driver Car
1 Sweden 25th International Swedish Rally 1975 Hans Thorszelius Lancia Stratos HF
2 Italy 17º Rallye Sanremo 1975 Hans Thorszelius Lancia Stratos HF
3 Italy 18º Rallye Sanremo 1976 Hans Thorszelius Lancia Stratos HF
4 Kenya 25th Safari Rally 1977 Hans Thorszelius Ford Escort RS1800
5 Greece 24th Acropolis Rally 1977 Hans Thorszelius Ford Escort RS1800
6 United Kingdom 26th Lombard RAC Rally 1977 Hans Thorszelius Ford Escort RS1800
7 Sweden 28th International Swedish Rally 1978 Hans Thorszelius Ford Escort RS1800
8 Greece 26th Acropolis Rally 1979 Hans Thorszelius Ford Escort RS1800
9 Canada 7ème Critérium Molson du Québec 1979 Hans Thorszelius Ford Escort RS1800
10 Ivory Coast 12ème Rallye Côte d'Ivoire 1980 Hans Thorszelius Mercedes 500 SLC
11 New Zealand 12th Motogard Rally of New Zealand 1982 Hans Thorszelius Toyota Celica 2000GT
12 Ivory Coast 15ème Rallye Côte d'Ivoire 1983 Hans Thorszelius Toyota Celica TCT
13 Kenya 32nd Marlboro Safari Rally 1984 Hans Thorszelius Toyota Celica TCT
14 Kenya 34th Marlboro Safari Rally Kenya 1986 Fred Gallagher Toyota Celica TCT
15 Ivory Coast 18ème Rallye Côte d'Ivoire 1986 Fred Gallagher Toyota Celica TCT
16 Kenya 38th Marlboro Safari Rally Kenya 1990 Fred Gallagher Toyota Celica GT-Four ST165

Complete WRC results[edit]

Year Entrant Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 WDC Points
1973 Björn Waldegård Fiat 124 Abarth Spider MON
Ret
POR
Ret
MOR
6
N/A N/A
Volkswagen 1303S SWE
6
Porsche 911 KEN
Ret
BMW Motorsport BMW 2002tii GRE
Ret
POL FIN AUT
4
ITA
51
USA GBR
7
FRA
1974 Toyota Team Europe Toyota Celica GT MON
C
SWE
C
POR
Ret
N/A N/A
Toyota Corolla 1600 GBR
4
FRA
Björn Waldegård Porsche 911 KEN
2
GRE
C
Opel Ascona FIN
10
ITA CAN USA
1975 Lancia Alitalia Lancia Stratos HF MON SWE
1
KEN
3
GRE
Ret
ITA
1
FRA GBR
DSQ
N/A N/A
Björn Waldegård Fiat 124 Abarth Spider MOR
Ret
Toyota Corolla 1600 POR
Ret
FIN
1976 Lancia Alitalia Lancia Stratos HF MON
2
SWE
Ret
POR KEN
Ret
GRE
Ret
MOR FIN ITA
1
FRA N/A N/A
Ford Motor Company Ltd Ford Escort RS1800 GBR
3
1977 Ford Motor Company Ltd Ford Escort RS1800 MON SWE POR
2
KEN
1
NZL GRE
1
FIN
3
CAN ITA
5
FRA GBR
1
2nd 30
1978 Ford Motor Company Ltd Ford Escort RS1800 MON SWE
1
POR
Ret
GRE FIN CAN ITA CIV FRA 14th 18
Björn Waldegård Porsche 911 KEN
4
Eaton Yale Ford Escort RS1800 GBR
2
1979 Ford Motor Company Ltd Ford Escort RS1800 MON
2
SWE
2
POR
2
FIN
3
CAN
1
ITA FRA GBR
9
1st 120
D.T. Dobie / Daimler-Benz Mercedes-Benz 450 SLC KEN
6
CIV
2
Rothmans Rally Team Ford Escort RS1800 GRE
1
NZL
1980 Fiat Italia Fiat 131 Abarth MON
3
3rd 63
Fiat Sweden SWE
3
C. Santos - Mercedes Mercedes-Benz 450 SLC POR
4
D.T. Dobie / Daimler-Benz KEN
10
Daimler-Benz GRE
Ret
Mercedes-Benz 500 SLC ARG
Ret
FIN
Cable-Price Corp. NZL
5
ITA FRA
SEACI CIV
1
Toyota Team Great Britain Toyota Celica 2000 GT GBR
Ret
1981 Publimmo Racing Ford Escort RS1800 MON
8
SWE 18th 17
Toyota Team Europe Toyota Celica 2000 GT POR
3
KEN FRA
Ret
GRE
Ret
ARG BRA FIN
9
ITA
Premoto Toyota CIV
Ret
Toyota Team Great Britain GBR
Ret
1982 Porsche Alméras Porsche 911 SC MON
92
SWE 6th 36
Toyota Team Europe Toyota Celica 2000 GT POR
Ret
KEN FRA GRE
Toyota New Zealand NZL
1
BRA FIN ITA
Premoto Toyota CIV
3
Toyota Team Great Britain GBR
7
1983 Toyota Team Europe Toyota Celica Twincam Turbo MON SWE POR KEN FRA GRE NZL ARG FIN
12
11th 20
Premoto Toyota CIV
1
Toyota Team Great Britain GBR
Ret
Pro Motor Sport Ferrari 308 GTB ITA
Ret
1984 Toyota Team Europe Toyota Celica Twincam Turbo MON SWE POR
Ret
FIN
Ret
ITA CIV 8th 28
Westlands Motors KEN
1
FRA GRE
Toyota New Zealand NZL
5
ARG
Toyota Team Great Britain GBR
Ret
1985 Westlands Motors Toyota Celica Twincam Turbo MON SWE POR KEN
2
FRA GRE 8th 34
Toyota New Zealand NZL
Ret
ARG
Toyota Team Europe FIN
7
ITA GBR
Ret
Premoto Toyota CIV
2
1986 Toyota Team Europe Toyota Celica Twincam Turbo MON SWE POR KEN
1
FRA GRE NZL ARG FIN CIV
1
ITA GBR USA
5
4th 48
1987 Toyota Team Europe Toyota Supra 3.0i MON SWE POR KEN
Ret
FRA GRE USA
6
NZL ARG FIN 36th 6
Toyota Supra Turbo CIV
Ret
ITA GBR
1988 Toyota Team Europe Toyota Supra Turbo MON SWE POR KEN
7
FRA 17th 16
Toyota Celica GT-Four ST165 GRE
Ret
USA NZL ARG FIN CIV ITA
Toyota Team Great Britain GBR
3
1989 Toyota Team Europe Toyota Celica GT-Four ST165 SWE MON
Ret
POR
Ret
29th 10
Toyota Team Kenya Toyota Supra Turbo KEN
4
FRA GRE NZL ARG FIN AUS ITA CIV GBR
1990 Toyota Team Kenya Toyota Celica GT-Four ST165 MON POR KEN
1
FRA GRE NZL ARG FIN AUS ITA CIV GBR 12th 20
1991 Toyota Kenya Toyota Celica GT-Four ST165 MON SWE POR KEN
4
FRA GRE NZL ARG FIN AUS ITA CIV ESP GBR 26th 10
1992 Martini Racing Lancia Delta HF Integrale MON SWE POR KEN
Ret
FRA GRE NZL ARG FIN AUS ITA CIV ESP GBR NC 0

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Markku Alén
(FIA Cup for Rally Drivers)
World Rally Champion
1979
Succeeded by
Walter Röhrl
Records
Preceded by
Sandro Munari
7 wins
(19731984)
Most Rally wins
11 wins,

8th at the 1979 Acropolis Rally
Succeeded by
Hannu Mikkola
18 wins,
12th at the 1982 RAC Rally
Preceded by
None
(FIA Cup for Rally Drivers)
Youngest World Rally Champion
36 years, 32 days
(1979 season)
Succeeded by
Walter Röhrl
33 years, 232 days
(1980 season)