Dubourg wins Andros Trophy title while teams & drivers announce plans for World RX, Euro RX & British RX
by Hal Ridge |
DA Racing driver Jean-Baptiste Dubourg (Renault Clio) sealed the Andros Trophy title last weekend by finishing second and first in the final two rounds of the season at Saint Die Des Vosges. The Euro RX driver came out on top of a championship decider with Franck Logorce (Citroen DS3). “What a final to the championship! We had a crazy day. After the last race on Saturday afternoon we were level on points, you couldn’t make it up. All of the DA Racing team was able to find what we needed to win the Andros Trophy. I am proud and honored to enter the exclusive club of drivers who have won this, it’s really amazing to realise what is happening. I’m really going to enjoy this title. It’s unique and unforgettable,” said Durbourg. World RX event winner Toomas Heikkinen (Mazda 3) finished third in the last final of the season and wound up seventh overall in the championship standings ahead of Andrea Dubourg (Renault Clio) in eighth.
World RX Team Austria has announced its 2016 World RX driver line up. Double European Rallycross Champion Timur Timerzyanov and 2015 Euro RX Super1600 champion Janis Baumanis will drive a pair of Ford Fiestas for the team, while team owner Max Pucher will race in the European Rallycross Championship and select World RX events in a third car. 2015 driver Manfred Stohl will remain involved with the team, but will focus on the engineering side, and as such, will be present at all 12 rounds of World RX. “2015 was a tough but exciting first year for the team. We reached the semi-finals regularly and the fact that we made the final in the last two events of the year shows how competitive both the team and the car were. Timur and Janis have an excellent track record in rallycross and now it is our responsibility to give them the best possible support with both the car and the team,” said Pucher.
Polish 2015 RX Lites Cup competitors Krzysztof Holowczyc and Martin Kaczmarski will race ex-Olsbergs MSE Ford Fiesta Supercars in the European Rallycross Championship this season. “We treated the first season in RX Lites as an opportunity to familiarise ourselves with rallycross and to learn the new form of racing,” said Kaczmarski. “There is no denying it – at first we received a serious beating, often from teenage drivers, but we were definitely hooked. It was then after a year of competing and training that we decided to take part in Euro RX.”
Single-seater convert Tamas Pal Kiss will race an ex-Team Peugeot-Hansen Peugeot 208 in Euro RX this season. The Hungarian made his rallycross debut in the Hungarian Championship last season at the wheel of a Skoda Fabia, and drove the Hansen run 208 at the final round of the European Championship in Italy, where he finished sixth. The car will be run by Speed Box Racing in 2016. “I’m really excited to be able to commit to a full season of Euro RX in such a fantastic car. We wanted the best car available and we’ve built a good relationship with the Hansen family. I would like to be on the podium a couple of times this year, and we have a clear target to try and win the Hungarian championship too,” said Kiss.
Former British Super1600 champion Jack Thorne will race an ex-Olsbergs MSE and World RX Team Austria Ford Fiesta Supercar in the MSA British Rallycross Championship this season. Thorne made his Supercar debut at the final round of the BTRDA Clubmans Rallycross Championship last year in a Ford Focus, but has upgraded his machinery to race in the British RX series and possibly a round of the European or World Rallycross Championship this year. “There were some delays getting the car over here because of all the snow in Austria, so we’re not going to get a chance to test before Croft, but we will be ready. This year will be a steep learning curve for me, my dad and the mechanics that come with us. I’m not going to go and potter around at the back, that’s not me. I’ll be hoping to win, but we’ll just do the best we can all the time and see how things go,” said Thorne.
Current MSA Super National Rallycross Champion Dan Rooke will race an LD Motorsports Citroen DS3 in the British Rallycross Championship this season. Rooke impressed in a Citroen AX year, claiming two wins and the championship title. He will drive the car used by Andreas Bakkerud in the European Championship in 2013. “I’m really excited to be able to make the move into the Supercar class. The cars are a lot different from what I am use to, so I’m looking forward to learning how to drive the car and to race in the class. LD Motorsports will be providing me with the car and on-event support through-out the year. They will also be giving me driver training, which I’m really looking forward to. I’m hoping to be able to make it to the podium by the end of the year,” said Rooke.
Former British Rallycross Champion Steve Palmer sadly died this week. Rallycross World remembered the 1990 British Champion and European competitor, here.
Volkswagen RX Sweden driver Johan Kristoffersson made his World Rally Championship debut last weekend at Rally Sweden, where he piloted an Even Management owned Skoda Fabia S2000 to top-ten fastest stage times and 21st overall at the finish. Regular World RX driver Henning Solberg (Ford Fiesta) finished seventh overall on his ‘home’ round of the series, while 2015 Euro RX overall podium finisher Ole Christian Veiby (Skoda Fabia R5) finished inside the top 20 in 16th place.
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