Seven days in rallycross, February 6

by Tim Whittington |

Peugeot has entered the FIA World Rallycross Championship by forming a new partnership with the most successful rallycross team ever, Hansen Motorsport. The new Peugeot-Hansen equipe will enter a pair of Peugeot 208 T16 Supercars in the 12-event WorldRX series. “At Peugeot Sport, we are constantly looking to explore different forms of motorsport. Rallycross is a discipline that is expanding quickly … we were attracted to the sport by a long list of factors, including its spectacular side, the big crowds it draws and the cars that are involved. They are very close to our target … and we face a fascinating challenge with a calendar of 12 rounds across the world in some of the most strategically important markets for the brand,” said Peugeot Sport director Bruno Famin.

More or less an open secret for a few weeks, Volkswagen of America and Andretti Autosport have confirmed plans to run a pair of VW Beetles in the 2014 GRC. The two cars will be driven by Tanner Foust and Scott Speed, the pair lured away from Ford for the new venture. Michael Horn, President and CEO, Volkswagen Group of America said, “We’re excited to partner with Andretti Autosport, one of the great names in American motor sports, and delighted that we will be running the iconic Beetle in the series.” The new team will begin the year by fielding a pair of VW Polos and is scheduled to switch to the Beetle at June’s X Games event.  “The level of preparation that Volkswagen Motorsport and Andretti Autosport bring to rallycross can’t be overstated. Volkswagen conquered the World Rally Championship on their first attempt and joining them for rallycross is an amazing opportunity,” said Foust who continues to drive in Rockstar colours while Speed’s car will be branded by 7 Up. In his own announcement, Foust also said that he would race a VW in selected rounds of the World championship.

Champions and award winners in the 2013 FIA European Rallycross Championships were presented with their trophies at the FIA Off-Road prize-giving in London on Saturday night. Russian Timur Timerzyanov collected his second successive FIA title, the prestigious trophy presented by FIA Deputy President Sport Graham Stoker who also gave awards to TouringCar category champion Derek Tohill, Super1600 winner Reinis Nitiss, the runners up in each category and Rookie of the Year Timmy Hansen. The prize-giving audience also heard a personal message from FIA President Jean Todt in which he noted IMG’s first year successes; the championship was awarded European Race Series of the Year in the Professional MotorSport World Expo Awards, and said “Indeed, so successful has the past year been that in December of last year we were able to confirm the creation of a World Rallycross Championship. This is a very important development in the history of the sport and I am confident that the expansion of the championship will see the popularity of rallycross grow ever greater.” The impressive event was hosted by the MSA, the first time it has organised the annual prize-giving, and accompanied by a day of safety and training seminars for officials and organisers of events in the FIA rallycross and autocross championships.

The calendar for Red Bull GRC has been announced and details a ten-event series based in north America and with its opening event taking place in Barbados at Bushy Park on May 18 where it runs within the Top Gear Festival.

At Lydden Hill the old control tower that has stood watch over almost all of the circuit’s history is demolished to make way for a new building that will be operational in time for the circuit’s British round of the FIA World Rallycross Championship event in May.

Frode Holte Motorsport chose its local motor sport show to unveil the new Hyundai i20 Supercar that its eponymous team boss hopes to run in a World championship campaign this year.

Also in Norway, Daniel Holten reveals that glove manufacturer Granberg will provide most of the backing for his season which is based around a season in the STCC linked Supercar Scandinavia series. “Since I was 16 this has been my big dream, but after spending a lot of money the last couple of years on Supercar racing, I thought I would never see this happen, he says smiling, adding that he is very happy this has now become a reality. I’m very thankful for the work that has been done, which makes it possible for me to continue Supercar racing. I’ll do my best to give back as much as possible in return to Granberg, my other sponsors and everyone that is a part of this,” said Holten.
Fast becoming the European home for Russian racers, Volland Racing has revealed a four-car line-up for the Super1600 of the European championship, former freestyle BMX rider Nikita Misyulya transferring to the team after winning the Lada Granta Cup in circuit racing last year.





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