Björn Waldegård dead
Legendary rally racing star Björn Waldegård has died aged 70.
– I'ts hard to put words to it, says his friend Jan Tromark to Sportbladet.
Björn Waldegård was one of the most prominent Swedes at all times in rally racing. He won the very first edition of World cup of rallying in 1979 and also came out on top in competitions in the Safari Rally,the Monte Carlo Rally and the Swedish Rally.
After his active years Waldegård amongst other things worked as sports commentator at Eurosport and in 2006 also lent his voice to the character "Björn Rallygård” in the "Cars" movie by Disney.
”One of the greatest”
Jan Tromark was sports commentator together with Waldegård at Eurosport for 18 years.
– I was told [about his death] five minutes ago. I'ts hard to put words to it.
– He is one of the greatest names of motor sport we ever had in Sweden. Of the Swedes in motor sport it was just him and Stig Blomqvist that managed to become world champions, says Tromark.
Both Tromark and Waldegård had left Eurosport but the two friends kept in touch.
– I talked the other day to his wife when I heard the rumours that he was ill, and then [she told me] he was in a hospital. But neither of us thought that the process would be that fast. It was very unexpected.
– He got the diagnosis Malignant Melanoma, he told me himself. It was some spot in a shoulder that he had removed in surgery and received the news that he should be fine. That it shouldn't be a problem. But you know how it can end, says Tromark.
”A big dismay all over the world”
He remembers Waldegård not just as a fenomenal driver but also as a good friend.
– I think it will be a big dismay all over the world after this. He was extremely well-liked and a fantastic person. About ten years ago, I think, a British motor sports paper ranked him the best ever rally racing driver of all times. Their verdict was based on his all round skills. He could drive just anything. There is hardly any other rally racing world champion in the history that has driven that amount of different types of cars and has done it so well, says Tromark.
Björn Waldegård died at the age of 70.