Rooke extends British RX margin as Speed wins in Atlantic City

by Hal Ridge |

British Rallycross Championship leader Dan Rooke claimed his third win of the season at Lydden Hill on Bank Holiday Monday to extend his margin at the head of the order. Rooke won the Supercar final by almost five seconds, with Dave Bellerby second and Julian Godfrey completing the podium. Pat Doran finished fourth at the circuit he owns. Steve Hill had a strong event in his Mitsubishi Evo X to come home fifth while James Grint was sixth in an Albatec Racing Peugeot 208 that Tommy Rustad will race this weekend in World RX at Loheac. Andy Grant made it into the final when qualifier Kevin Procter withdrew with engine sensor troubles. Grant finished seventh with Ollie O’Donovan classified eighth after suffering transmission problems on the opening lap of the race and only having one-wheel drive.

Rooke took third win of British RX season at Lydden Hill. © Ridge

Tony Lynch won the MSA Supernational Rallycross Championship final, while Tom Llewellin made his third start in the MSA Junior Rallycross Championship category and claimed his third win in a row, ahead of title protagonists Tom Constantine and Sam Jones. Chrissy Palmer maintained his 100% winning run in the RX150 Rallycross Championship this season, while Nathan Heathcote strengthened his position at the head of the Swift Sport Rallycross Championship with victory and Bradley Durdin won in the BMW Mini Rallycross Championship on his debut in the class. Tristan Ovenden was the only driver to make it to the end of the event in the Super1600 Rallycross Championship and claimed the win, while Barry Stewart won in the Retro Rallycross Championship and Robert Potyra was victorious in the Hot Hatch division.

Tony Lynch won Supranational at Lydden Hill. © Ridge

Two new drivers contested the latest round of the American-based Global Rallycross Championship. Kevin Eriksson drove a third Honda Civic for the OlsbergsMSE squad while for ex-WRC driver Chris Atkinson made his rallycross debut in a third Subaru Impreza for Vermont SportsCar. Volkswagen Beetle pilot Scott Speed started on pole position for the final at the series’ first visit to Atlantic City and claimed victory after passing early leader and team mate Tanner Foust, who dropped down the order by the finish to end up fourth. Patrik Sandell finished second with Brian Deegan scoring another podium finish in third. Behind Foust in fourth, Steve Arpin and Sebastien Eriksson completed the top six. In the GRC Lites final, Alex Keyes secured his fourth career victory and first win of the season, with Travis PeCoy second and Colin Braun third.

Scott Speed took another GRC win with Andretti Polo. © Bull

The second round of the Turkish Rallycross Championship was held at Ankara Gudul, where Avitas Motorsport owner Halid Avdagic claimed victory with an Avitas ‘Control 2’ car. Bora Arabaaci finished second in a similar car with Avitas’ R&D Director Kerem Sickle completed a podium lock-out for the RX Lites constructors. Sinan Saatci won Category3 in a Mitubishi Evo 4 with Yavuzhan Cabbaroglu second in a Subaru Impreza.

Two-time British Rally champion Guy Wilks will return to the JRM Racing team with which he made his World Rallycross Championship debut in the UK last year to race in the Spanish and Latvian rounds of the series this season in a two-litre powered car, sponsored by LOCO Energy Drink. “It’s been more than a year since I last drove the MINI RX so I’m interested to see how the car has developed with its new two-litre engine and to see if I can discover the kind of performance that will really give us a fair chance at the front of the World RX field,” he said

Guy Wilks will race JRM Mini in Spain and Latvia. ©

Latvian World RX driver Reinis Nitiss will split from the Munnich Motorsport team for which he has driven this season following this weekend’s eighth round of the championship at Loheac. Just days after announcing his departure from the German squad, Nitiss announced that he will return to OlsbergsMSE to race a Ford Fiesta Supercar in Barcelona, and plans to race at his home round of the series in Riga, but is yet to reveal in what car. “I am pleased that we could find a fast agreement with Olsbergs MSE – a team and car that I know very well. Of course it will be hard to change the car mid-season, but I will do my best in Spain to reach the highest result possible,” he said.

Nitiss will switch to an OMSE Fiesta for Barcelona event. ©

A fortnight ago at Oulu in Finland, reigning champion and now OlsbergsMSE World Championship driver Niclas Gronholm competed in his own Ford Fiesta Supercar and won. Gronholm beat Euro RX Super1600 campaigner Janno Ligur (Ford Fiesta) in the A-final. Former European Rallycross podium finisher Jussi-Petteri Leppihalme (Mitsubishi Mirage) completed the podium, ahead of Ari Perkiomaki, Aki Karttunen and championship leader Jere Kalliokoski. Henri Haapamaki finished just half a second ahead of Jussi Klemola in the Supernational division and Eklund Motorsport driver Joni-Pekka Rajala was victorious in the Autokrossi A-final.



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