BARCELONA RX: EURO RX REVIEW
Wednesday 21st of September 2016
Sweden’s Kevin Hansen dominated the fourth round of the FIA European Rallycross Championship in Barcelona to score his fourth win in a row and secure the Euro RX Supercar title with one event in the five-round calendar to go in Latvia next week.
Racing alongside the ninth round of the FIA World Rallycross Championship in Barcelona, Hansen started on pole position for the Euro RX Supercar final, and had a close race with France’s Jerome Grosset-Janin to the second corner, before Grosset-Janin ran wide and dropped to sixth. Hansen’s closest title-rival, Norway’s Tord Linnerud, was second in the opening laps, enough to the take the championship to a final round decider, but when the Volkswagen Polo driver took his joker on lap four, 2015 Euro RX champion Tommy Rustad climbed to second, where he finished, meaning Hansen cannot now be beaten even if he fails to start the last round of the championship.
“It’s incredible to have won the title! I grew up in the paddocks of the European Rallycross Championship and it’s something I’ve dreamt of ever since I was a kid. There couldn’t have been a better way to make that dream come true than by winning every one of the four rounds so far,” said Hansen. “Being the youngest ever champion is the icing on the cake. It hasn’t really sunk in yet, but it won’t stop me from trying to add a fifth victory at the final round.” Rustad described his podium as his “best second place ever” after he rolled his Albatec Racing Peugeot 208 in Q2, meaning forcing the Scottish team to stay up all night to repair the car. Linnerud finished the final third, ahead of Grosset-Janin, and Swedish pair Peter Hedstrom and Fredrik Salsten.
In the FIA European Rallycross Championship for Super1600, Denmark’s Ulrik Linnemann retook the championship lead from Krisztian Szabo. The Hungarian had taken the points lead in the previous round at Loheac, but retirement from the final after contact and victory for Linnemann means the pair are split by six points as the championship nears its conclusion in Germany next month. Hungary’s Luigi scored his first podium of the season in second, as did Lithuania’s Kasparas Navickas, driving a similar Skoda Fabia.
The RX Lites Cup also held its penultimate round in Barcelona, where championship leader, France’s Cyril Raymond claimed victory, ahead of his nearest challenger Thomas Bryntesson and another Norwegian, Simon Wago Syversen. Sweden’s Simon Olofsson finished fourth and Norway’s Thomas Holmen was fifth. Kenya’s Tejas Hirani retired at the first corner of the final.
You can watch full highlights of the FIA European Rallycross Supercar Championship and the Euro RX Super1600 category from Barcelona in the new-for-2016 highlights programme tonight [Wednesday September 20 at 19.00 BST and 20.00 CET] on the FIA World Rallycross Championship YouTube channel.
Full results from Barcelona RX can be found here.
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