Thursday | 16 Dec 2021

Top 10 Drivers of the Year: Jānis Baumanis (10th)

As we begin our countdown of the Top 10 Drivers of the Year in 2021 across the FIA World Rallycross Championship, FIA RX2e Championship and FIA European Rallycross Championships (Euro RX1 and RX3), we take a look at the driver you voted into 10th place – Jānis Baumanis.

Jānis BaumanisFIA European Rallycross Championship bid did not get off to the happiest of starts in 2021, with myriad issues holding him back in the Höljes curtain-raiser, where he was unable even to reach the semi-final stage.

A first corner spin in Q1 at Lohéac seemed to set the scene for another difficult weekend, but the Latvian immediately responded by topping the times in Q2 in front of ESmotorsport stablemate Andreas Bakkerud, and a fifth-place finish in the final capped a solid points haul.

Baumanis then became the hero of Rīga when he raced to victory on home soil at Biķernieki trase a fortnight later, earning him a title shot in the Spa-Francorchamps season finale – albeit very much as an outsider. Another strong run in Belgium secured him a second podium finish of the year – elevating him to third place in the championship standings in the process.