The third round of the FIA Central European Zone Rallycross Championship and the third round of the Austrian Rallycross Championship took place at former European Championship venue Melk last weekend, where Jurgen Weiß (Ford Focus) won ahead of World RX Team Austria owner Max Pucher (Ford Fiesta) and Alois Holler (Ford Focus). As a result, Pucher moves into the championship lead of the CEZ. In the Super1600 category, Mario Petrakovits (VW Polo) won while Valav Veverka (Peugeot 208) finished second and Werner Panhauser (Citroen C2) was third. Roman Castoral (Opel Astra) won the SuperTouringCar -2000 division and Attila Toth (BMW E36) won in SuperTouringCar +2000.
British driver Guy Wilks will race at his home round of the FIA World Rallycross Championship at Lydden Hill, driving an OlsbergsMSE Ford Fiesta Supercar. Wilks made his rallycross debut at the same event last season driving a JRM Racing Mini RX and made the final, and also competed in the French round of the championship at Loheac, but was forced out for much of the event with technical troubles. “I’m massively looking forward to getting back behind the wheel at Lydden. To get another chance to show what I can do will be a great opportunity and racing on the track is where I want to be,” said Wilks.
Former WRC rally winner Francois Duval will also race an OMSE Fiesta at his home round of the championship this season, the Belgian announcing this week that he will race at the Mettet round. Duval won his home round of the FIA European Rallycross Championship in 2010 driving a Ford Focus run by Pauwels Motorsport. “I hope I can make it to the semi-final or maybe even the final this time round,” said Duval. “It is a very good car and I’m feeling confident, I think I have a very great opportunity here.”
Later in the week, a bumper Supercar entry of 49 cars was announced for the third round of World RX at Mettet, which includes the first round of the FIA European Rallycross Championship for Supercar. Within the Euro RX line-up, Danish Super1600 event winner Ulrik Linnemann will make his Supercar debut, driving a Peugeot 208 run by Pailler Competition, joined on the grid by the team’s regular driver, Fabien Pailler (Peugeot 208). “It feels really nice that my Supercar debut is so close now,” said Linnemann. “It’s a big dream for me to have a seat in one of these amazing cars. I did a test with the Supercar and Jean-Luc Pailler was really happy after just a few laps. The car was easy to handle, so I was happy too.”
Former French Champion Pailler will also compete in the opening round of the French Rallycross Championship this weekend at Essay as part of a mixed selection of events he will race in this year. Philippe Maloigne will make his debut in an Albatec Racing Peugeot 208 Supercar at Essay. Andrea Dubourg, younger brother of Euro RX racer Jean-Baptiste, will race the new DA Racing Citroen DS3 and will take the wheel in the first of three consecutive weekends for the new car, before it is raced at Hockenheim and Mettet by Andros Trophy Champion Jean-Baptiste.
The third and fourth rounds of the MSA British Rallycross Championship will be held at Pembrey in South Wales, where for the first day of competition the circuit is being run in the ‘opposite’ direction, thanks to a raft of changes. Welsh rally legend, and double British Rally Champion Dai Llewellin will compete in an RX150, and will be joined by his son, Ben, who will also drive a buggy in the double-header event.
In a busy weekend of national rallycross action, the opening round of the RallyX Nordic Championship will be run at Skovde, alongside the STCC (Swedish Touring Car Championship), at which Volkswagen RX Sweden driver Johan Kristoffersson will make his first STCC start of the season in a Seat for the PWR team. In the rallycross event, reigning champion Kevin Eriksson will start the defence of his title, but will face a stiff challenge from a host of Swedish and Norwegian drivers. Irishman Derek Tohill also revealed this week that he will compete in the event as he prepares for the start of the European Rallycross Championship, following the announcement that the second round of the Irish Rallycross Championship at Galway, scheduled to take place this weekend, has been cancelled.
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