The FIA World Rallycross Championship title fight is poised to be a thrilling encounter, as Swedish brothers Timmy and Kevin Hansen and Norwegian Andreas Bakkerud vie for the World RX glory in Cape Town.
Heading into the season finale, Timmy Hansen leads the drivers' championship by a single point ahead of Andreas Bakkerud, while Kevin Hansen is eight points behind Timmy with a maximum of 30 points on the table.
So, who are the three World RX championship contenders, and what must they do to take the crown on Sunday?
The championship leader Timmy Hansen began his motorsport career in circuit racing before moving over to rallycross in 2012. After finishing third overall in the 2013 FIA European Rallycross Championship, Timmy moved over to the FIA World Rallycross Championship and claimed his maiden World RX victory in 2015.
Andreas Bakkerud, second in the championship started karting at the age of 8 before switching to rallycross. He finished runner-up in the 2009 Norwegian RX championship before stepping up to the Super1600 European Championship in 2010 and went on to secure back-to-back titles in 2011 and 2012. The Norwegian graduated to the European Rallycross Championship in 2013. In 2014, he joined the FIA World Rallycross Championship and has remained in the premier class ever since.
Third, in the title race, Kevin Hansen, younger brother of Timmy, started his career in karting in 2005 before becoming World Champion in ROK Junior in 2010. Kevin won the JRX Series in 2012 as well as Junior Championships in Britain and Sweden before stepping up to RX2 in 2014. In 2015, he won the RX2 title and stepped up to Supercars in 2016.
These three title rivals and the rest of the World Rallycross field will line up for four action-packed qualifying heats on Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning. Each crucial heat sees five cars starting alongside one another and racing to determine the twelve semi-finalists through a series of four-lap races. Sixteen points are awarded to the top-qualifier with 1 point for a 16th place finish.
The two Semi-Finals will see six cars in a two-by-two grid formation and race for six laps, with the top three from each of those races going through to a similar six car, six lap final.
In the Semi-Finals, six points is awarded to the winner with 1 point for sixth place, while the final is a bit different. Eight points is awarded to the winner, 5 points for second with 1 point for sixth place.
Get those calculators out.... Every point will count!
The pressure is on: Who will be crowned the 2019 FIA World Rallycross Champion?
Written By - Junaid Samodien