The FIA World Rallycross Championship continues to the second to last round, now entering Turkey and Intercity Istanbul Park. A track that has previously hosted F1, WTCC, DTM and so on, and will host its first ever round of rallycross this weekend.
But wait a minute. You may have noticed that the championship has already been decided? Petter Solberg had a healthy lead going into Italy, and though he suffered suspension problems in the final, he strengthened his lead overall with a third place while Timmy Hansen was dominant and took his first WorldRX win. Swedish Touring Car Champion Richard Göransson managed to take second in his first ever round. Full final result from Italy found below:
- Timmy Hansen 04:55.473
- Richard Göransson +6.361
- Petter Solberg +31.410
- Timur Timerzyanov +57.682
- Johan Kristofferson - DNF
- Andreas Bakkerud - DNF
Which means that Petter Solberg extended his lead to 60 points in front of Topi Heikkinen. Since Solberg has four wins so far this season and Topi just one, and the maximum amount of points availible each round is 30, Solberg was crowned 2014 World Champion, the first driver with two different FIA World Titles.
- Petter Solberg - 235
- Toomas Heikkinen - 175
- Reinis Nitiss - 167
- Timmy Hansen - 152
- Timur Timerzyanov - 148
- Andreas Bakkerud - 146
- Anton Marklund - 138
- Pontus Tidemand - 82
- Robin Larsson - 74
- Johan Kristofferson - 57
So, why should you watch the last two rounds then? First of all rallycross is excellent entertainment, and the team championship is still a three-way fight between Peugeot-Hansen, OlsbergsMSE and Marklund Motorsport. Also there are still new drivers coming through, and several wildcards returning!
Both Tanner Foust and Ken Block returns for the 60% tarmac 40% gravel track in Istanbul, additions that make this one of the most attractive rounds for a North American audience. Jacques Villeneuve had another disappointing round in Italy, and will return to F1-commentating this round. Replacing him in Albatec Racing is Marc Scott, son of team owner and second driver Andy Scott. Marc has driven in the British Rallycross Championship before, and will be an interesting addition to the team. Mattias Ekström are still busy with DTM, and since Pontus Tidemand is busy with WRC2 Edward Sandström and PG Andersson will drive for the EKS team. Sten Oja is back in the second PSRX car after the guest appearance of Simone Romagna.
- 1: Timur Timerzyanov (RUS), Team Peugeot-Hansen - Peugeot 208
- 3: Timmy Hansen (SWE), Team Peugeot-Hansen - Peugeot 208
- 11: Petter Solberg (NOR), PS 110% - Citroën DS3
- 13: Andreas Bakkerud (NOR), OlsbergsMSE - Ford Fiesta ST
- 15: Reinis Nitiss (LVA), OlsbergsMSE - Ford Fiesta ST
- 21: Bohdan Ludwiczak (POL) - Ford Fiesta
- 26: Andy Scott (GBR), Albatec Racing - Peugeot 208
- 34: Tanner Foust (USA), Marklund Motorsport - VW Polo
- 43: Ken Block (USA), Hoonigan Racing Division - Ford Fiesta ST
- 54: Jos Jansen (BEL) - Ford Focus
- 57: Toomas Heikkinen (FIN), Marklund Motorsport - VW Polo
- 66: Derek Tohill (IRL), LD Motorsports - Citroën DS3
- 79: Edward Sandström (SWE), EKS - Audi S1
- 88: Henning Solberg (NOR), LD Motorsports - Citroën DS3
- 92: Anton Marklund (SWE), Marklund Motorsport - VW Polo
- 97: Sten Oja (EST), PS 110% - Citroën DS3
- 100: PG Andersson (SWE), EKS - Audi S1
- 111: Richard Göransson (SWE), OlsbergsMSE - Ford Fiesta ST
- 122: Marc Scott (GBR), Albatec Racing - Peugeot 208
- 133: Lars Øivind Enerberg (NOR), LD Motorsports - Citroën DS3
The second "new" driver this weekend is Lars Øivind Enerberg from Norway driving the car Davy Jeanney and Skorupski have used so far this year. Enerberg was the European Rallycross Champion in the Touring Car division in 2011, but lack of sponsors made him turn his attention to rallying a Volvo 242 in Norway instead. He's still considered a huge talent and a good drive in the last two rounds might secure him more sponsors for next year.
All this can be watched on livestream on Sunday as usual. There they will show a recap of the heats as well as live finals. The only difference this time around is the time, which is one hour earlier than usual, 13:00 CET or 7AM EDT.