Friday 2nd of August 2019

Three drivers are locked in battle at the top of the FIA World Rallycross Drivers’ Championship as World RX heads to Trois-Rivieres in Canada next week for round seven.

Sweden’s Kevin Hansen leads the points in front of Team Hansen MJP team mate Timmy Hansen and 16 points further back, Monster Energy RX Cartel’s Andreas Bakkerud is also in the hunt for a first title. 

As the tensions rise in the battle to be Champion, the Bakkerud Vs Hansen duel that has become part of rallycross folk law could well continue. Here are some key moments in the history of that fight:

Holjes 2013

At the Swedish round of Euro RX in 2013, Bakkerud led the final, took his joker on lap four but dropped behind Hansen, then forced his way back up the inside of Hansen’s DS3 in the velodrome section to take his first win.

Istanbul Park 2014

Hansen had dominated the first Turkish round of World RX, but in the last corner of the first lap of the final, Hansen made a mistake, Bakkerud budged him wide to take the position and the race win.

Holjes 2015

In the race made famous for Hansen passing Sweden’s Mattias Ekstrom in the final corner prior to being given a penalty for the move, Hansen was all over Bakkerud’s Ford Fiesta’s rear bumper for the first four laps of the final, then forced his way into a gap on the inside of Bakkerud’s car at the Velodrome, pushing Bakkerud off line to take the position.

Norway 2018

As the grid launched to turn one of the final at Hell RX in 2018, front row starter Hansen was touched in the door by EKS Audi Sport’s Mattias Ekstrom, pushing him into the path of Ekstrom’s team mate Bakkerud on the inside of the circuit, spinning Hansen’s Peugeot 208 round the front of Bakkerud’s Audi, Hansen getting pushed sideways over the kerb and into a spin.

Latvia 2018

At the Latvian round a few months later, Bakkerud made a brilliant start from the second row of the semi-finals in Riga, but was squeezed between Team Peugeot Total drivers Timmy Hansen and Sebastien Loeb and lost time. At the end of the race, Hansen and Loeb made it through, with Bakkerud fourth behind the third Peugeot of Kevin Hansen.

Abu Dhabi 2019

Fastest times in Q1 and Q2 gave Hansen the overnight TQ (top qualifier) position at Yas Marina Circuit, but in Q3, after race leader Hansen took his joker lap, Bakkerud slammed his Audi into the side of Hansen’s Peugeot, thinking it was the final lap and heading for the finish line inside of turn one. The damage to Hansen’s car put him out of the event, and Bakkerud was given a penalty that meant he didn’t make the semi-finals.

Silverstone 2019

Hansen was quickest Q1 and Q2 at Silverstone, then Bakkerud was best in Q3 and Q4. Both drivers won their semi-finals to start on the front row of the final and Bakkerud moved into the lead when he gave Team Hansen MJP’s Hansen the squeeze into turn one, pushing the Peugeot 208 into the tyre wall. Hansen fought back and took the win, overtaking using joker lap strategy.

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