Foust splashes to World Rallycross win in Finland

by Hal Ridge |

Marklund Motorsport wildcard driver Tanner Foust once again excelled in wet conditions to win the fourth round of the FIA World Rallycross Championship at Kouvola, Finland in an event that became just as much about who could keep their car pointing in the correct direction as outright speed.

Foust started the final from the front row, made the best start and was never headed in slippery, muddy conditions, leading home the OlsbergsMSE pairing of Andreas Bakkerud and Reinis Nitiss, who extended his championship lead in the process. Kryszystof Skorupski scored his best result of the season to finish fourth with day one pace setter Anton Marklund in fifth and Finnish wildcard driver Joni-Pekka Rajala in sixth.

While the final was good, the event’s drama was at the semi final stages, a day of drizzle turning into heavy rain that fell between the fourth heat and the semis. Reinis Nitiss won his fourth consecutive semi final of the year in semi final one, ahead of Bakkerud and Skorupski, while competitors struggled with the slippery conditions from the very first corner. Timur Timerzyanov hit the armco on the inside of turn two and was out with two punctures, while team mate Timmy Hansen had an eventful day. The Swede rolled his Peugeot 208 out of heat three, the Peugeot-Hansen team producing a mammoth effort to get him back in for heat four, but he too would slide off in semi final one on lap two.

Foust lead semi final two from lights to flag, but the race would take two starts, the first attempt aborted when Toomas Heikkinen, Derek Tohill, Liam Doran and Petter Solberg were involved in a second corner pile up. Solberg got his car back to the grid with the front end damaged and would finish the three-car restarted race in third. However, repairs after the race took longer than expected and he didn’t make it to the final, replaced by first reserve Rajala. Tohill and Doran had cause to be disappointed by the result, both caught up in other peoples accidents, Tohill especially having his best weekend so far in his debut Supercar season.

Nikita Misyulya claimed a maiden victory in the Super1600 category ahead of Norway winner Janis Baumanis and Rasul Minnikhanov while Daniel Lundh extended his lead in the TouringCar title fight with victory, heading home local driver Jari Jarvenpaa and Torleif Lona. Kevin Hansen made his debut in the RX Lites Cup and took victory from Turkish driver Yigit Timur and Niclas Gronholm, son of double World Rally Champion Marcus.




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