ARX and ARX2 Ready to Mess With Texas for The Championship Finales
AUSTIN, Tex. (September 27, 2018) – The inaugural Americas Rallycross (ARX) season will conclude this weekend with the final round at the Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas (September 29 – 30), where the first ARX Champion will be crowned.
The series returns to COTA’s permanent purpose-built rallycross circuit – located in the natural amphitheatre between turns 12 and 15 of the Formula 1 layout – that hosted round two of ARX back in July to wrap up 2018 at the World RX of USA.
Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross driver Scott Speed leads the Championship following back-to-back triumphs in Austin and at the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivieres in Canada, in rounds two and three.
Winner of the first ever ARX event at the Speedmachine Festival in Silverstone, UK, VARX driver Tanner Foust is nine points behind Speed in the standings and finished third in the first visit to COTA in July, behind the Championship leader and Loenbro Hoonigan’s Ken Block.
Speed, Foust and Block are just three of nine drivers that have the ability to qualify for the final and finish on the podium this weekend. Subaru Rally Team USA has been tantalisingly close to finishing on the podium on more than one occasion this season. Regular drivers Patrik Sandell (Sweden) and Chris Atkinson (Australia) are currently third and fifth in the points. Sandell recently won the Idaho Rally International and Atkinson showed the benefit of summer break developments to the WRX STI by setting impressive pace at Nitro Rallycoss last weekend.
The third Subaru USA entry will be driven at COTA by Finnish driver Toomas “Topi” Heikkinen. A driver with former success in rallycross in America, Heikkinen has X Games Gold Medals and two World Rallycross victories in his locker and is the fourth driver to race the third Subaru as part of the team’s rotation system this year.
Loenbro Hoonigan will also be hoping to wrap up its inaugural ARX campaign on a high. Block has finished on the podium twice in the Ford Focus RS RX, while Canadian driver Steve Arpin finished fourth at Nitro Rallycross last weekend and is in confident mood heading back to COTA.
After scoring a podium finish at Silverstone, UK in ARX’s first round, Britain’s Liam Doran returns to the series for the COTA finale. He will race FIA World Rallycross Championship team GC Kompetition’s Renault Megane RS RX. He is joined on the grid by another British driver, Oliver Bennett.
Xite Racing driver Bennett made his ARX debut at COTA in round two but was slowed by technical issues with the Mini Cooper S. His team has been working hard on the development of the new car since and returns to the US this weekend targeting at least final qualification.
The official single-make ARX support category, ARX2, will run its second doubleheader weekend of the season at COTA to round out the year. Vermont’s Conner Martell won the first ever ARX2 round at COTA back in May and also twice claimed victory at GP3R last month. The DirtFish Motorsports driver leads Dreyer and Reinbold Racing’s Christian Brooks and Buhl Sport’s Alex Keyes in the points.
Keyes is tied on points with DirtFish’s James Rimmer, with Scott Andersson just a point behind in fifth. Another point further back in the standings, Jamaican Fraser McConnell made his rallycross debut in round one at COTA and was top qualifier. In the hotly fought field, every driver in ARX2 is capable of battling for a place in the final and a podium finish. Having made his return to the sport at GP3R, former rallycross champion, Cabot “The Big Ham” Bigham will take to the start grid again this weekend in Austin.
Saturday, September 29
11:00 a.m. – ARX2 and ARX Qualifying 1
1:20 p.m. – ARX2 and ARX Qualifying 2
3:10 p.m. – ARX2 Qualifying 3
3:40 p.m. – ARX2 Semifinals
4:10 p.m. – ARX2 Final
Sunday, September 30
9:00 a.m. – ARX2 Qualifying 1 and ARX Qualifying 3
10:40 a.m. – ARX2 Qualifying 2 and ARX Qualifying 4
12:20 p.m. – ARX2 Qualifying 3
1:15 p.m. ARX2 and ARX Semifinals and Finals