The FIA World Rallycross Championship’s first event outside took all the headlines this week. The historic event produced the first double event winner in World RX as Petter Solberg increased his lead at top of the points chart and became the first driver to take home a second of the series iconic trophies. Anton Marklund and Timur Timerzyanov shared the podium with Solberg, each having his best result of the year in the Friday event that was a new feature in Canada’s biggest motor sport event, the Grand Prix Trois-Rivieres.
Outside of the World event, the Finnish championship returned to action after a break of eight weeks. The third round in the series took place at Joensuu and produced a new winner as Aki Karttunen (Skoda) beat series leader and winner of the first two events, Joni-Pekka Rajala. Having being forced to miss Finland’s World RX event when the engine in his Citroen C4 failed in a pre-event test, Janne Kanerva was back in action here and claimed third place. Rajala was also in action in the Supernational class where he returned to the top step of the podium by leading home Jarno Kukkola and Topi Kannonlahti. The Autokross class was won by Tomi Rakkolainen while Jami Kalliomaki took his third straight crosskart victory.
The third round of the Norwegian championship was run at Melhus where Stian Haugan claimed another event win, this time beating Ola Froshaug and Thomas Tornby. Fourth was taken by Hans-Joran Ostreng who was the last finisher after Hans Olav Opheim and Markus Johannessen were both excluded for jump starts. Steinar Stokke (Mazda RX7) won the TouringCar section with Jonas Jacobsen and Kjetil Larsen in second and third places. Trond Marthinsen (Saxo) took anotehr Super1600 victory ahead of Asgeir Taraldsen and Espen Isaksaetre. The Junior class was won by Lina Maria Holt (Peugeot 206).
National championship rallycross returned to Maasmechelen where racing replaced politics. Pole qualifier Jochen Coox led the early part of the final but was challenged by Koen Pauwels – having his first event in the ex-Patrick Van Mechelen Fiesta. Both went off in the duel which left the way open for Ron Snoeck to move ahead and take the win in his Seat. Coox regained the track to place second with Will Teurlings third. Peter Van De Wege (Toyota Yaris) led the Super1600 final from start to finish, class points leader Davy Van Den Branden placing second. Nick Snoeys took the TouringCar victory as the only car remaining in the class after Patrick Mertens suffered engine failure in his Polo. Steve Volders (Escort) took the over two-litre Supernational class after Volvo dueo Kristof Bex and Luc Maris both slipped up while leading. The up to two-litre class was won, for the third time in five events, by Steven Stressens.
With its big name driver Jacques Villeneuve otherwise occupied commentating on the Italian Grand Prix, Albatec Racing has nominated Englishman David Binks to drive its Peugeot 208 in the French round of the World Rallycross Championship at Loheac. It will be Binks’ first event since his 2012 GRC campaign.
With sadness we also note the death of Daniel Wachrou. As president of the French championship organiser AFOR for 21 years, Wachrou was the guiding light in what remains the sport’s biggest and best domestic series until he stood down following heart problems. He died on August 1, the day before his 65th birthday.
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