The big story of the week has been Sebastien Loeb’s entry for the RallycrossRX event at Loheac. Invited to compete by the organising Ecurie Bretagne, the nine-time World Rally champion will drive a Citroen DS3 Supercar in the event. Loeb has only once before raced a Supercar, taking a Hansen Motorsport-built DS3 to victory in last summer’s X Games. The FIA European Rallycross Championship event adds further diversity to Loeb’s wide ranging activities in 2013; alongside selected WRC events the Frenchman is racing in the FIA GT championship, has taken part in the Porsche Supercup and will tackle Pikes Peak with Peugeot this summer.
National championship racing began in Sweden on Saturday (May 11) where Strangnas hosted the series opener. Johan Kristoffersson was cleary best of a thin Supercar entry in the event, Mats Ohman and Thomas Andersson the only other starters in what was effectively a support class. The championship action focused on Supernational where 27 drivers started in the top class. Daniel Wall (Volvo V40) came through to take the victory, usurping pole starter Ulf Eriksson (BMW E30) who lost ground to second place finisher Jimmy Holmkvist (Volvo S40). The 2400cc class drew 39 starters and was topped out by pseudonymous racers by “Fidde” (BMW E30) and “Gummse” (Mercedes C) with Mattias Ohlsson (BMW E30) third. Robin Larsson used his TouringCar Skoda Fabia to great effect, running out fourth against a full field of more powerful rivals. The Junior series was won by Tommy Johansson (BMW E36), the similar car of Andreas Persson third with the Peugeot 205 of Pontus Jakobsson between the pair.
A very wet Knockhill was the scene for the third round of the British Rallycross Championship which made its annual trip to Scotland on May 12. Having initially planned to use the event as a test for his new Albatec Racing Peugeot 208, Andy Scott made a late switch to his Peugeot 306 Supercar. Reunited with the car in which he took his first British championship victory, and with Tony Bardy Motorsport who ran the car, Scott beat Julian Godfrey (Fiesta VI) and Pat Doran (Citroen DS3) to win the event, the championship’s third different victor in as many rounds. Mal Boyd (Toyota MR2) overcame Ash Simpson’s Lotus Exige to take the Supernational honours. The Junior class was the firm property of Kevin Hansen while the Swift Sport field was led home by Chris Mullen.
The Dutch championship continued on Sunday, the second of its events at the Eurocircuit run in dry weather and resulting in another victory for Patrick Van Mechelen (Fiesta). Van Mechelen led him Jos Kuypers, the home favourite racing with a heavy heart following the death of team member Paul van Gerwen who had accompanied Kuypers in his racing for the last 36 years. Ron Snoeck took third in his Seat. The two Supernational categories were won by BMW drivers, Johan Kwinten taking the two-litre class in his E30 with Davy Leysen’s newer E36 topping the over two-litre group. There was a TouringCar victory for Willem Slob (VW Golf IV) and Super1600 success for Peter van de Wege’s Toyota Yaris.
Leading up to the third round of the FIA European Rallycross Championship in Hungary, Munnich Motorsport completed a test session with its Super1600 Skoda Fabias at Nyirad while young Czech racer Ondrej Smetana also prepared for his seasonal debut in RallyrossRX by giving his newly completed Ford Fiesta VII – the first example of the current Fiesta model in the Super1600 category – a successful shakedown test at the Hungarian venue.
This week British Touring Car front-runner, and former rallycross champion Andrew Jordan announced he will test with OMSE at the start of June, with a view to competing in the European Championship as soon as there is a budget in place to do so. “I have been talking to Andreas [Eriksson], and he invited me to go to Sweden and test the Fiesta. Since I left rallycross I have wanted to come back. I was very young when I last raced a Supercar and I now wish I had appreciated it more. The cars are so fun to drive,” said Jordan. “I’m a much better driver now than I was then, I think I could really show well. There are a couple of events I could still do this year that don’t clash; we are trying really hard to get something in place.”
Looking ahead to the coming weekend, Carlos Sainz finally confirmed that he will start in the X Games Barcelona in Marklund Motorsport’s second VW Polo while in France the national championship has a slightly later than usual start with round one at Essay-Alencon where the bill also includes the second round of the Rallycross Challenge and the fourth round of the Belgian championship which continues its tour through Europe having already been seen in Belgium, Britain and Holland.
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