World RX returns to German F1 track for DTM and Rallycross double header
MEDIA RELEASE: Round two of the FIA World Rallycross Championship presented by Monster Energy takes place at the famous Hockenheimring later this week (6-8 May) as the World RX teams and drivers compete alongside the DTM German Touring Car Championship for a weekend of exhilarating motorsport action.
Twenty-one 600bhp World RX Supercars will compete at the specially-constructed rallycross circuit within the famous Sachs Curve at Hockenheim including reigning World RX Champion and round one winner, Petter Solberg.
Solberg took the win at the inaugural Hockenheim RX last year, ahead of Reinis Nitiss and Timmy Hansen who finished second and third respectively.
Solberg will be joined by a host of other rallycross talents including last year’s Championship runner-up Hansen plus 2016 newcomers Sebastien Loeb and Ken Block.
On top of the 17 permanent teams and drivers, France’s Davy Jeanney and Sweden’s Kevin Hansen will embark on their second outings of the year in the Peugeot Hansen Academy team, while Austria’s Max Pucher and France’s Jean-Baptiste Dubourg will both make their first starts of the season.
Hockenheim will also form the season-opener to this year’s RX Lites Cup – a one-make series for identical 300bhp, four-wheel drive racecars that appears at seven of the World RX events and which provided career steps for Kevin Hansen and permanent Supercar driver Kevin Eriksson.
There will be nine RX Lites entries competing at Hockenheim including last year’s title challenger Thomas Bryntesson (Norway), his compatriot Simon Wago Syversen plus Sweden’s Alexander Westlund and Simon Olofsson.
The Olsbergs MSE squad will run three cars: Cyril Raymond (France) Tejas Hirani (Kenya) and German Sport 1 television presenter, Patrick Simon. Sondre Evjen and Joachim Hvaal will join Bryntesson in the JC Race Teknik team.
The driver with the busiest schedule of the weekend, however, is EKS driver Mattias Ekstrom who will compete in both World RX and DTM. “To race in both series is a great challenge, but I love these kind of challenges,” explained Ekstrom.
Although the busy EKS boss did not compete at Hockenheim last year, he was able to test the track at an official test last month: “They’ve made a lot of improvements and I like the track. The starting area is on a drag strip, which is very slippery in wet conditions, but after our two-day test in Holjes, I’m really confident.”
Paul Bellamy, World RX Managing Director for IMG, commented: “We have created an exciting schedule of races this weekend at the renowned Hockenheimring – and we can promise even more rallycross action as the RX Lites drivers join us for the first time this season.”
From a Cooper Tire point of view.
Paul Coates, General Manager – Motorsport, Cooper Tire Europe, commented: “For 2016 there is a revised track layout at the Hockenheimring. We have monitored wear rates in the initial World Rallycross tests here this season to determine the levels of expected abrasion. From the data that we have collated, we are confident that the tyres should run well within the suggested 120°C upper temperature limit.”
Hockenheim RX Timetable
Thursday 5 May
1700: Drivers’ draw for Q1 plus pre-event press conference
Friday 6 May
0905: World RX open practice
1030: RX Lites open practice
1125: Audi Sport TT Cup free practice
1230: Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland free practice
1355: World RX & RX Lites qualifying
1445: DTM press conference
1515: World RX qualifying
1700: DTM free practice 1
Saturday 7 May
0905: Audi Sport TT Cup qualifying
0950: Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland qualifying
1120: DTM free practice 2
1210: Audi Sport TT Cup race 1
1305: Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland race 1
1350: DTM qualifying for race 1
1600: DTM race 1
1715: World RX warm-up
1720: DTM press conference
1725: World RX qualifying
1755: RX Lites semi-final
1820: RX Lites final
Sunday 8 May
0910: Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland race 2
1000: DTM free practice 3
1100: World RX warm-up
1110: World RX semi-finals
1130: Stunt driver
1140: World RX FINAL
1150: World RX podium ceremony
1215: World RX press conference
1230: DTM qualifying for race 2
1430: DTM race 2
1545 (approx.): DTM podium ceremony
1610: DTM press conference
1620: Audi Sport TT Cup race 2