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13 May 2016

ERX: Mettet Preview

Category: ERX, News Posted 13.05.16 16:21 by

The opening round of the 2016 European Rallycross Championship gets underway this weekend in Mettet, Belgium – alongside the third round of the WRX.

The Circuit Jules Mettet Tacheny plays host to this weekend’s third round of the World RX and the season opener of the Euro RX.

Last season RX drivers were greeted with over 23,000 spectators, with the Frenchman Jérôme Grosset-Janin taking the Euro RX event win from Ole Christian Veiby and Tamás Kárai.

 

Tommy Rustad is fourth overall, but overnight leader of the EuroRX contenders. © JKR/ERC24

Reigning Euro RX champion Tommy Rustad. © JKR/ERC24

 

Last seasons opener marked the beginning of a five round tussle, that eventually ended in a tight championship win by well-known ‘Rallycrosser’ Tommy Rustad. The reigning Euro champion Rustad was a dominant force last season, and was locked in battle with Frenchman Grosset-Janin for most the season.

The pair have joined forces this season, under the team stewardship of Andy Scott, with Albatec Racing running three Peugeot 208’s this season.

Eklund Motorsport, another former partner of Scott are returning for 2016 spearheaded by the young Norwegian talen – Alexander Hvall. Joni-Pekka Rajala will compete alongside Hvaal in Eklund Motorsport VW Beetles.

 

Swedish Rally and Rallycross legend Per Eklund is the man behind the WorldRX Beetle SuperCar project. © Holten Motorsport/ERC24

Swedish Rally and Rallycross legend Per Eklund is the man behind the ERX Beetle SuperCar project. © Holten Motorsport/ERC24

 

Fresh of the back of last weekend’s WRX outing – Jean-Baptiste Dubourg is running the championship in an all-new Citroen DS3. Dubourg used last weekend’s Hockenheim event to gain valuable knowledge of his car with the hope of hitting the ground running in 2016

Peter Hedström – recently outlined his long term WRX goals. The Swede is competing in a new car for 2016, having run some outings in the ‘Liqui Moly’ backed Fiesta last season.

Fredrik Salsten has made the Supercar step-up for 2016. Salsten, the TouringCar Champion 2015, is stepping up and will drive in the FIA European Rallycross Championship for Supercars in 2016. In a cooperation between Hansen Talent Development and Salsten Racing he will drive a Peugeot 208 WRX in all five events.

 

The Circuit Jules Tacheny at Mettet in the Walloon Region of Belgium. © JKR/ERC24

 

Jochen Coox will make select Euro RX appearances, kicking off at his home event at the weekend: “I think we have an extremely good car with the VW Polo. A car with which I am able compete with the best in European Rallycross. Let me be clear that we remain faithful to the Belgian championship, but in addition we would consider attending some European events as well.” The Belgian competing in an ex-Marklund Motorsport Supercar for 2016. 

Tamas Pal Kiss is back for 2016, alongside his fellow Hungarian contingents Tamas Karai and Lukacs Kornel. Kiss and Karai have been dominating the FIA CEZ Rallycross Championship – and look set to challenge the top Supercars in Belgium.

 

Frenchman Jérôme Grosset-Janin claimed victory of the ERX SuperCars category. © JKR/ERC24

Frenchman Jérôme Grosset-Janin leading the 2015 ERX Supercars pack. © JKR/ERC24

 

See full event schedule