Monday 29 April 2019

REPORT: Timmy Hansen enters the record books with dominant win in Spain

PHOTO CREDIT: Red Bull Content Pool. 
Team Hansen MJP driver Timmy Hansen claimed his first win of the 2019 FIA World Rallycross Championship in a dominant fashion.

Hansen rebounded from an event-ending qualifying crash in Abu Dhabi to claim a clean sweep of wins.

The Swede joins Bakkerud and Kristoffersson to become one of three drivers to claim a clean sweep of wins in World RX. 

Team Hansen MJP spent nine days repairing Timmy's damaged Peugeot 208 Supercar following a hefty impact in Abu Dhabi damaging the chassis and roll cage. 

“We had to work incredibly hard and put all our resources into re-building my car from Abu Dhabi. The mechanics worked day and night and got the car here in good condition,” he said.

Hansen admits after a disappointing weekend in Abu Dhabi, he just wanted a clean weekend. 

“Honestly, I just wanted a good, clean weekend but I started with a win in Q1 and Q2 and won all four qualifying races. I think it’s only the fourth time that’s been done and only the third time anybody has the perfect weekend so I’m really happy to be in the history books," says Hansen.

“I really worked hard on my starts this weekend. You have to be super focussed to get a good launch with a rallycross car but we did it all the way through. And I’m really looking forward to building on this result.”

Younger brother Kevin finished second in the final after holding off a late charge from Andreas Bakkerud. The Norwegian started on the second row of the grid alongside Janis Baumanis. Bakkerud had a perfect start and jumped to the inside of the Hansen brothers trying to capitalize on the exit of turn one. 

He was unable to overtake the Hansen brothers and opted for a last-lap joker lap but still emerged behind Kevin at the run to the flag.

Kevin Hansen’s second place in Spain means the Swede maintains his overall championship points lead.

“I am really pleased with this result," said Kevin Hansen. 

"To get second place is very satisfying. I tried my best against Timmy but he was just too fast in the final."

“I don’t think about the championship too much. It’s nice to be leading and to know that I’ve been competitive so far. I am really enjoying the car and the whole feeling at the moment and I hope to keep this momentum going and keep a smile on my face,” he adds.

Bakkerud revealed that his Audi S1 Supercar had €60,000 damage after the qualifying collision in Abu Dhabi. 

Despite claiming a podium finish in Barcelona, the Norwegian said that his Supercar is not completed fixed yet.

“It’s been hard to play catch-up," he said. "We are still struggling from the crash in Abu Dhabi. We are still working on the car step-by-step but we are getting there."

“Three times in a row I have been on the podium in Barcelona so obviously I Iike it here."

Gronholm finished fourth in the final after getting stuck behind Janis Baumanis. The Finn maintains his second place in the championship on 48 points, eight points behind Kevin and 10 ahead of Timmy.

Cyril Raymond impressed in his GCK Academy Renault Clio Supercar and claimed fifth place in his first World RX final.

The GC Kompetition team had an improved performance from Abu Dhabi despite recurring engine issues for Guerlain Chicherit. The team was forced to change his engine. But despite the engine set back, the Frenchman claimed a place in the semi-finals alongside Cyril Raymond and Guillaume De Ridder.

Liam Doran had a mixed weekend but made it to the semi-final as did Timur Timerzyanov.

EKS Sport driver Krisztian Szabo had a last-corner spin in the second semi-final. The Hungarian claimed his first World RX heat win and claimed 10 points in the championship. While Timo Scheider had a strong start to the weekend but then ran into some difficulties. The German had a troublesome semi-final and claimed fifth place ahead of Szabo.

World RX debutant Sir Chris Hoy enjoyed his first taste of World RX and picked up two championships points.

Hoy’s Xite Racing teammate Oliver Bennett had a troublesome weekend with issues in nearly ever qualifying heat. ESmotorsport - Labas GAS's rookie Rokas Baciuska also did not have the cleanest of weekends in Spain.

Independent entry Tamas Karai was disqualified from the fourth qualifying heat after causing a collision at turn one. While Herve Knapick rolled his Citroen DS3 Supercar in the first qualifying heat and could go no further.

OFFICIAL RESULT provided by the FIA World Rallycross Championship.
TEXT - Junaid Samodien

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