World RX launches & entry list. Volders in Belgium. Snow stops play in Ireland

Seven days in rallycross 7 March

by Rallycross World |

3 March Muhammed ben Sulayem, the 14 time FIA Middle East Rally Champion and now president of the UAE ASN, drives the official opening laps of the new rallycross track at Yas Marina Circuit. A media event to launch the new 1200 metre track is also attended by Niclas Gronholm, Timur Timerzyanov, Reinis Nitiss and Oliver Bennett. “Yas Marina Circuit is always innovating when it comes to hosting thrilling motorsport races that attract fans and entertainment seekers to Abu Dhabi and FIA World Rallycross Championship is the latest in our portfolio of world-class events,” said Al Tareq Al Ameri, CEO of the circuit.

3 March The opening round of the Irish Rallycross Championship is halted when Mondello Park is engulfed in a snow storm. The event had reached the semi-final stage before it was stopped, three time champion Derek Tohill leading in his Ford Fiesta Supercar. As yet there is no certainty as to how points will be awarded. The championship continues at Tynagh on 7 April.

3 March Driving his new RX2 – in which he plans to contest the RX2 series this year – FIA European Champion in TouringCar, Steve Volders wins the opening round of the Belgian Rallycross Championship at Maasmechelen. Luc Maris (Volvo S40) won the over two-litre Supernational class, the up to two-litre class won by Kurt Lambers (BMW M3) after Nick Neyens and and Martijn Vanhove clashed in the first corner. Davy Van Den Branden (Citroen DS3) took the Super1600 win. European karting star Kobe Pauwels won the Cross Car event.

3 March EKS announces its return to World RX with a single car entry for Hungarian star Krisztan Szabo.The double Super1600 champion made it to the final in each of his two European Supercar starts with EKS in 2018. “It is going to be different in 2019 with a much more balanced championship. Everyone has a bigger chance, including me. I have one of the best teams and cars behind me. I have the right background – a world championship-winning team, the professional support of Mattias and I feel well-prepared,” said Szabo.

4 March Julius Ljungdahl will race for Yellow Squad by Hansen in the Rally X on Ice event at ARE on 18-23 March. Ljungdahl will race the new team’s Speedcar while Timmy Hansen will put development miles on its new Lifelive chassis.

5 March At the Geneva Motorshow, Cooper Tires launches its new studded tyre for ice Rallycross events.  The 17 inch tyre features 416 studs and will be used in competition for the first time at the Rally X on Ice events at Are in Sweden on 18-23 March. The tyre has been conceived to be suitable for use on Supercars as well as the RX2 on which it will be used this year.

5 March Guerlain Chicherit’s GC Kompetition unveils a new GCK Academy team which will run in tandem with GCK in the FIA World Rallycross Championship. The senior GCK team will feature Chicherit and Anton Marklund driving a pair of Renault Meganes. Cyril Raymond and Guillaume De Ridder will line up for GCK Academy and will drive Renault Clios. FORS Performance will run both teams. “To now enter the Championship with four cars is a big step. It allows me to compete in the GCK Megane R.S. RX alongside Anton who I’ve been working with clo­sely over the last few months but also to support two super talented junior drivers in Cyril and Guillaume to develop in a World Championship driving the GCK Clio R.S. RX. I’m really excited to see what the season will bring,” said Chicherit.

6 March Super1600 champion Rokas Baciuska is named as there driver for new World RX team ESmotorsport – Labas Gas. The 19-year-old will join his compatriots in an all Lithuanian team which will run a Skoda Fabia. “From the very first full season in Super 1600 class I won the European rallycross championship straight away. Of course, I don’t expect to do the same this season in World RX, but we will fight for the highest places. Not from the very first race maybe but during the season we believe we can go to fight for the podium,” said Baciuska. The team also confirmed that it plans to expand to a two-car outfit later in the year and that Kevin Abbring will drive the second car when it is ready.

6 March Emerging from what he describes as his team’s ‘toughest ever winter’ Kenneth Hansen confirms his 33rd season of international rallycross competition as Team Hansen MJP announces its entry for the 2019 FIA World Rallycross Championship. The team will field a pair of Peugeot 208s for Timmy and Kevin Hansen. “We were mentally and emotionally at rock-bottom for a while, but now, finally, we are back, said Team Manager Susann Hansen.

6 March FIA World Rallycross Championship promoter IMG reveals the entry list for the 2019 championship. There will be 16 permanent entries comprised of six two-car teams and four individual competitors. The entry includes drivers of 11 different nationalities driving eight different makes of car. 

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