Seven days, August 16

by Tim Whittington |

The GRC moved on to Atlanta where Toomas Heikkinen continued his winning run by taking victory in his heats and then running out the clear winner in the final. Ken Block also won in the heats but was out of luck yet again as a component failure at the start of the final ended his day. Block’s exit left Heikkinen with a comfortable run, the Fiesta driver chased by Tanner Foust whose pace was slowed later in the race after his Fiesta suffered a puncture. Brian Deegan lost third place when his car broke and put him off the track late in the race, Sverre Isachsen moving through to take the position for Subaru. The loose surface sections of the track degraded during the event contributing to the rate of attrition. Henning Solberg made an appearance alongside Timur Timerzyanov in the Pastrana Dodge team and finished tenth of the 12 starters, Timerzyanov placing fifth.

The win, his fifth of the year, has put Heikkinen within touching distance of the title, the Finn needing only to start in the next event in order to seal the title. “I think the pressure is gone right now. We have a long holiday after this one, and I think I’ll just go home and relax and test. I want to win every race!” he said.

The GRC Lites field was also in action at Atlanta where Joni Wiman again took victory to remain undefeated in the class. The win was more closely contested than previously, Sebastien Eriksson duelling with the Finn until Wiman took advantage and the win. Eriksson lost second place to Mitchell de Jong late in the race.

The fourth round of the Rallycross Challenge took place at Maasmechelen where Jos Jansen took victory on home ground and in his first appearance in the series. Seven Supercars took the start, the field reduced to six after Bernd Schomaker failed to make it past the first heat. Pavel Koutny qualified on pole but as the final developed, it was Jansen who climbed to the front to take the win.

Frenchman Dorian Launay (Clio) claimed his second Super1600 win of the year and led home Vaclav Veverka Jnr. (Peugeot 206) and Stanislav Susta (Fabia) while Filip Baelus (C30) topped the TouringCar order ahead of Nick Snoeys (Fiesta) and Ivo van den Brandt (Mitsubishi Colt). Supernational appeared in event as a supporting class, large entries in both the under 2000cc and over 2000cc categories producing good racing. Jef Mertens won the smaller capacity group in his Opel Astra, helped on his way after class favourite Pedro Cokelaere was black flagged. The over two-litre class was completely dominated by Steve Maris who kept his Volvo 240 ahead of the pack throughout the weekend.





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