Hansen wins in Abu Dhabi, RX2 drivers sign up, Solberg retires, Hoy for World RX, Jordan returns

Seven days in rallycross 12 April

by Rallycross World |

5 April Andorran driver Albert Llovera announces that he will return to the single-make RX2 International Series in 2019, following a first full-time campaign last year. The youngest athlete ever to compete in the Winter Olympics, Llovera’s skiing career was cut short by an accident in 1985 that left him paralysed from the waist down. He has subsequently competed in motorsport, including WRC events and the Dakar rally and most recently have raced in RX2.

6 April Team Hansen MJP driver Kevin Hansen wins the opening round of the FIA World Rallycross Championship at Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, despite crossing the finish line second in the final. Hansen claims victory after GRX Taneco driver Niclas Gronholm (Hyundai i20) is handed a three-second penalty for nudging Hansen’s Peugeot and gaining track position in the final. Liam Doran (Audi S1) finishes third, only the second British driver to appear on a World RX podium. Pre-season championship favourites Timmy Hansen (Peugeot 208) and Andreas Bakkerud (Audi S1) have their events ended in Q3 by an accident at the end of the third lap, when Bakkerud ran into the side of Hansen’s Peugeot. Krisztian Szabo (Audi S1), Janis Baumanis (Ford Fiesta) and Timo Scheider (Seat Ibiza) complete the final finishers.

7 April Noel Greene (Mitsubishi Mirage) scores a comfortable win in the second round of the Irish Rallycross Championship at Tynagh, Co Galway, winning both the Supercar final and the Superfinal. Willie Coyne (Opel Corsa) wins the Modified final and then finishes second to Supercar runner Greene in the Superfinal, as Darragh Morris (Subaru Impreza) completes the overall podium. Brendan McCaughan (Ford Fiesta) claims victory in the Junior class.

8 April Swede William Nilsson confirms a dual programme for the 2019 season, where he will continue to compete in RX2 with the JC Raceteknik team while also undertaking a programme in the Scandinavian V8 Thunder Cars series to bolster his asphalt experience.

9 April Daniel Thoren announces that he will continue to race a Hedstroms Motorsport Volkswagen Polo in RallyX Nordic this year, alongside a campaign, together with Peter Hedstrom, in the FIA European Rallycross Championship. Thoren’s first season of rallycross ended with a huge accident in the Nordic finale at Tierp last year.

10 April Two-time FIA World Rallycross Champion Petter Solberg announces the end of his professional driving career with immediate effect. Solberg began his driving career in rallycross before switching to rallying, where he won the World Rally Championship in 2003. He returned to rallycross in 2013 and won the World RX Drivers’ title in 2014 and 2015, then claimed the Teams’ title in 2017 and 2018 with his PSRX Volkswagen Sweden outfit. The Norwegian will undertake a Farewell Tour this year at events including Goodwood’s Festival of Speed the Norges Raeste Bakkelop hillclimb in Norway and Gymkhana GRiD.

11 April It’s announced that six-time Olympic cycling gold medallist Chris Hoy will make his rallycross debut in the Spanish round of the World Rallycross Championship later this month. The 43-year old will drive an Xite Racing-run Ford Fiesta in the Catalan event, following a test at Pembrey in South Wales next week. “I am really looking forward to competing in the World RX in Barcelona. Driving a rallycross car has always been on my bucket list, but to actually race against the world’s best will really be something special, and a huge challenge,” he said. Jani Passonen will drive STARD’s second Ford Fiesta in the event.

11 April Regular RX2 racer Simon Olofsson announces that he will return to the series this season, following a difficult 2018 campaign. The RX2 season will begin at the second round of World RX in Barcelona this month.

11 April Former European Rallycross Champion Derek Tohill (Ford Fiesta) is announced as entering the second round of the British Rallycross Championship at Lydden Hill on Easter Monday. Tohill joins Ollie O’Donovan (Ford Fiesta) and Jake Harris (Citroen DS3) on the list of late entries for the event.

12 April Jamaican driver Fraser McConnell reveals that he will make his RX2 debut in Spain this month for the Olsbergs MSE team, following a strong maiden campaign in the Americas Rallycross’ support series ARX2 last year.

12 April It’s revealed that former British Rallycross Supercar Champion and World Rallycross Championship podium-finisher Andrew Jordan will race in the Titans RX series in 2019, racing a single-make PanteraRX6. Jordan has made selected World RX appearances since leaving the sport to peruse a circuit racing career in 2008, the highlight of which was winning the British Touring Car Championship in 2013.

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