Stage Set For Second ARX Champion to be Crowned at Cooper Tires ARX of Mid-Ohio
The second-ever Americas Rallycross (ARX) Champion will be crowned this weekend Oct. 5-6, for the 2019 season finale at the Cooper Tires ARX of Mid-Ohio, in what is set to be blockbuster, action-filled showdown.
The ARX season began at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course back in June, where since, in visits to Gateway Motorsports Park, the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivieres and the Circuit of The Americas, four different drivers have stood on the top step of the podium.
As the Supercar teams return to Mid-Ohio for the last round on the schedule, any one of eight drivers could win the last event of the year, as Andretti Rallycross’ Tanner Foust heads the championship standings by 17 points, following wins in Canada at GP3R and last weekend at COTA in Austin, Texas.
Second to Foust’s No. 34 Volkswagen Beetle in the championship standings is Swedish driver Patrik Sandell, who took his first ARX win with Subaru Motorsports USA’s WRX STI in round three, the second event in a double-header weekend at Gateway Motorsports Park back in July.
Just two points behind Sandell in the standings is his Australian teammate, Chris Atkinson, who won the second round on the schedule at Gateway. The pair are joined for the second weekend in a row at Mid-Ohio by FIA World Rallycross Championship title-contender Andreas Bakkerud, from Norway, driving the No. 13 WRX STI, and Finnish driver Joni Wiman, who has won American rallycross titles before and finished on the World RX podium on his return to the sport this year in Belgium.
Both drivers made the showed front-running pace last weekend at COTA, when Bakkerud took the lead in the first turn during the final and having a battle for a podium finish throughout the race.
Loenbro Motorsports’ Steve Arpin heads to Mid-Ohio fourth in the points, but only just behind Sandell and Atkinson with the redeveloped Ford Fiesta. Further development work with the car in round five down in Austin, and this weekend at the team’s shop in Charlotte gives Arpin confidence that he and rising-star teammate Travis PeCoy – who both finished on the podium in round on at Mid-Ohio – can challenge for victory this weekend.
Like PeCoy, Andretti Rallycross’ Cabot Bigham has stepped up to ARX Supercar from the official support series, ARX2, this year, and has impressed with his pace. In an up-and-down season, he finished second to Foust in an Andretti 1-2 in Canada and was in the podium hunt at COTA until contact before the first turn put him out of contention.
Like all the ARX competitors, Bigham heads to the final round at the 1300m, 60% asphalt / 40% gravel course at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course hoping to end his season on a high.