RX2 STAR MCCONNELL JOINS INDYCAR DRIVERS FOR ARX2 ROUND 1
Saturday 8th of June 2019
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A new champion will be crowned in ARX2 this season, the official single-specification support category to Americas Rallycross (ARX) which will burst into action this weekend at the Cooper Tires ARX of Mid-Ohio.
Big motorsport names and experienced rallycross drivers make up the grid in the second-tier division, with 2019 RX2 International Series – the official support category to the FIA World Rallycross Championship – podium finisher Fraser McConnell keeping match fit between the Silverstone and Hell RX2 races to drive for DirtFish Motorsports in the first double-header of the ARX2 season.
He will be joined by Brad DeBert, who has made a name for himself in off-road short course racing and is a former Pro-Lite categorychampion. Buhl Sport Detroit driver Alex Keyes won the final two races of the 2018 ARX2 season in Austin, Texas and will return for a second season in the No. 4 Racing4Detroit ARX2 machine. Another ARX2 podium finisher from the first ARX season, Cole Keatts, has signed to race as part of a four-car team for Dreyer & Reinbold Racing.
Joining Keatts will be veteran Indianapolis 500 driver J.R. Hildebrand in the No. 48 WIX Filters with Mecum Auctions machine, the 31-year old Californian is making his rallycross debut in ARX2 as part of a two-weekend program for the double-headers at Mid-Ohio and at ARX of Gateway next month. Hildebrand has already tested the all-wheel drive DRR car and will be joined on the grid by his DRR Indy 500 teammate, Sage Karam. The former Indy Lights champion will drive the No. 24 WIX Filters DRR race car at Mid-Ohio and Gateway.
The team’s fourth driver will be 14-year old Gray Leadbetter, the first female to compete in ARX2. Leadbetter will race the Oil2Soil-sponsored DRR car for the entire nine-race schedule. She has previous experience of competing on both two and four wheels, and has been racing since she was just three years old.
Her recent credentials include winning back-to-back regional amateur Arenacross championships and an international karting title, as well as compete in UTV off-road racing and Mini-Outlaw sprints. Under the guidance of 2004 Indy 500 champion Buddy Rice,Leadbetter has recently tested a wide range of cars in the US and Europe.
Americas Rallycross will also include a third-tier division for the first time in 2019, ARX3 providing an introductory-level into the sport. After being used as the official vehicle of the 2018 World Rallycross USA celebrity event, the 200hp six-speed sequential SIERRA buggies, weighing 900lbs and launching from 0-60mph in under 2.8 seconds provide a great first-step for young drivers looking to compete in ARX. Drivers competing include Aaron Kaufman, James Kirkham, Bill Shuster, Jim Jonsin, John McInnes and Dave Wallingford.
ARX2 Coverage will be shown live all-weekend long onFacebook.com/ARXRallycross and featured on the CBS Sports Network broadcast on Wednesday, June 12 at 9:00 p.m. ET.