Tue 14 May 2024

O’Donovan chasing ‘childhood dream’ as he confirms Euro RX1 title bid

Patrick O’Donovan will tackle his second full season in the FIA European Rallycross Championship’s top-tier in 2024, as the rising British star chases the fulfilment of a ‘childhood dream’ with Team RX Racing.

A member of the rallycross paddock since before he could walk – as he supported his father, Ollie O’Donovan, from the sidelines – the 20-year-old was already a podium-finisher in the single-spec FIA RX2e Championship when he burst spectacularly onto the Euro RX1 scene at Nyirád in 2022, snaring fourth spot in the intermediate ranking on his debut and only being denied a place in the final by a puncture.

His reputation bolstered by a brace of victories in RX2e later that same season, O’Donovan embarked upon his maiden full campaign in Euro RX1 last year, triumphing at Höljes’ ‘Magic Weekend’ and reaching the rostrum on two further occasions, enabling him to snatch third in the overall standings at the last-gasp.

After confidently taking the fight to more experienced rivals throughout, the double British Rallycross Champion is now eager to add the European Championship crown to his burgeoning career CV, as he returns to the track behind the wheel of his Hansen Motorsport-built Peugeot 208 WRX, fully rebuilt over the off-season by Sam Clennell Motorsport.

“I spent a lot of time over the winter break thinking about what the right decision would be in terms of race plans for 2024,” revealed O’Donovan, who achieved a podium finish on his FIA World Rallycross Championship bow in Hong Kong last November.

“It hasn’t been easy, and there has been a lot of temptation to race in the World Championship now that internal combustion cars are allowed in the ‘Battle of Technologies’, especially after such a good weekend for us in Hong Kong. But after a lot of thought, I kept coming back to the same conclusion – it’s my childhood dream to win the European Rallycross Championship.

“After a taste of success at Höljes last year and a run of strong, positive results, we have shown what we can do but we certainly have unfinished business. As a team, it was also our first season at this level compared to the teams we were competing against who have been doing this for many years. Together, we learned a lot, and I feel like we will only move forward this season. I can’t wait to get back in the Peugeot for the first round of Euro RX in France.”

“Like Patrick says, it was very attractive to race in World RX this season, but he has a dream and we will do everything we can to help him to realise that this year,” added Team RX Racing Team Principal, Ollie O’Donovan – like his son, a former British Rallycross Champion and podium-finisher in Euro RX.

“I was impressed with his performances last season. Of course some things didn’t go 100 per cent right as they never do in motorsport, but hopefully with the experience gained, we can take a step forward. I am so proud of how our small, passionate team continues to perform against some much bigger outfits and I know everyone will try their absolute best to deliver this season.”

The forthcoming Euro RX1 campaign will get underway at Essay in France on 8-9 June, followed by World Championship-supporting rounds at Höljes in Sweden (6-7 July), Nyirád in Hungary (27-28 July), Mettet in Belgium (17-18 August) and Montalegre in Portugal (7-8 September).

Starts: Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 4:31:00 AM
Starts: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 7:00:00 AM
Starts: Saturday, July 27, 2024 at 6:00:00 AM