ROOKE AND BAUMANIS RECORD FIRST INTERNATIONAL WINS
Racing alongside the FIA World Rallycross Championship and FIA European Rallycross Championship Supercar action at the World RX of Holjes in Sweden last weekend were the RX2 and Super1600 support categories.
Unlike in the World RX and Euro RX classes, where home drivers scored victories (Johan Kristoffersson and Anton Marklund), it was Britain’s Dan Rooke who won the RX2 International Series final and Latvia’s Artis Baumanis who won the FIA European Rallycross Championship for Super1600 final.
For the fourth event in a row, France’s Cyril Raymond dominated the RX2 category in qualifying as Rooke retired from Q1 and had to fight back up the order to qualify for the final. Raymond led the final on the first lap, but on lap two his left rear tyre deflated, forcing him to defend the lead from Rooke. Belgium’s Guillaume De-Ridder seized the opportunity to take the lead from third position, but was passed by Rooke later in the lap. Raymond dropped to sixth as Rooke became the only driver to finish on the podium at every event so far in 2017 with his first victory and closed the gap to Raymond in the points. De-Ridder finished second and Sweden’s William Nilsson completed the podium. Sweden’s Andreas Backman and Stein-Fredrik Akre recorded personal-best finishes in the final, in fourth and fifth.
Baumanis was second quickest in every one of the four qualifying sessions at Holjes in the Super1600 category and started on the front row in the final. He took the lead from Estonia’s Janno Ligur and Hungary’s Kristian Szabo on the opening lap, took his joker lap during the race and reclaimed the lead when Szabo took his joker on the final lap. Ligur converted a good start from the second row into a podium finish, but Russia’s Timur Shigabutdinov wasn’t able to turn his TQ (top qualifier) qualifying performance into a podium finish. He took his joker on lap one then battled with Finland’s Jussi-Petteri Leppihalme during the final to finish fourth. Hungary’s Gergely Marton finished sixth.
Find full Holjes RX results here.
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