Rounds three and four of the The FIA World Rallycross Championship presented by Monster Energy move to Finland this weekend, racing at the Kouvola circuit for the first time since 2014.
Following the hectic action at Holjes last weekend, 180 event personnel undertook PCR tests before leaving Sweden to move to Finland, all of those returning negative results.
This weekend’s double-header event features two separate FIA World Rallycross Championship events, one full event – comprising three rounds of qualifying races, semi-finals and the final – taking place each day.
Last weekend in Sweden Johan Kristoffersson and Mattias Ekstrom claimed one victory each, Kristoffersson placing second in Sunday’s event and moving to Finland with a two point lead in the championship.
Kristoffersson, the champion in 2017 and 2018, is just ahead of 2016 champion Ekstrom whose KYB Team JC teammate Robin Larsson holds third in the championship having also produced a strong weekend in Sweden.
Kevin Hansen starts the weekend holding fourth place and clear of his older brother, current FIA World Rallycross Champion Timmy Hansen who is placed eighth after a difficult opening weekend. Both Team Hansen drivers have prior experience of Kouvola and will be aiming to recover lost ground in Finland.
Timo Scheider had his best ever World RX weekend in Sweden placing third and fourth in the two events to hold fifth in the championship for ALL-INKL.COM Muennich Motorsport.
GCK Bilstein’s Anton Marklund also featured strongly in the first weekend and is sixth entering Finland, ahead of Niclas Gronholm whose GRX Taneco teammate Timur Timerzyanov holds 11th place.
Monster Energy GCK RX Cartel had a mixed weekend with neither of its drivers in the finals in round one, but with Andreas Bakkerud hauling himself back into contention by placing sixth in round two and laying ninth in the championship. His teammate Liam Doran is 17th after two days of technical problems with his Renault Megane.
‘Wildcard’ racers Krisztian Szabo and Sebastian Eriksson are placed 10th and 12th after Sweden, ahead of Rokas Baciuska who is 13th and his Unkorrupted teammate Guerlain Chicherit in 15th place. Chicherit will be joined by Kevin Abbring this weekend, as the Dutchman stands in for Baciuska in Finland.
Rene Muennich (14th) and Jani Paasonen (16th) complete the field, the latter entering his home event this weekend.
Kouvola, approximately 130km north east of the Finnish capital Helsinki. It’s the largest town in the Kymenlaakso region of south east Finland. Because of control measures around the COVID-19 pandemic the event is closed to spectators.
Tykkimaen Moottorirata, the Tykkimaki Circuit, at Kouvola is an undulating rallycross track that is 1 060 metres long and consists of 55% asphalt and 45% gravel surfaces. It has hosted the FIA World Rallycross Championship once before, when American Tanner Foust won in a VW Polo Supercar in 2014. It has previously hosted the FIA European Rallycross Championship and is regularly used in Finland’s national championship.
The livestream for the events will be carried on the World RX Facebook and YouTube channels: