Driver

LATVIA DEBRIEF: WHAT THE TEAMS SAID

Monday 23rd of September 2019

Drivers in the FIA World Rallycross Championship faced both dry and wet conditions in a tense championship weekend at the Nesta World RX of Latvia in Riga. It was Team Hansen MJP’s Timmy Hansen who claimed victory to set up an epic title fight with Monster Energy RX Cartel’s Andreas Bakkerud and team-mate Kevin Hansen for the final round in Cape Town.

Here’s what the teams had to say about the weekend in Riga ... 

Team Hansen MJP:

Timmy Hansen P1, Kevin Hansen P4

Timmy Hansen: “It was tough yesterday (Saturday). First of all we were very disappointed, but then you can either decide to be angry or to be happy. We came together, we had a nice evening and this morning we played some nice music. Everybody was pumped, everyone kept believing that if we made the perfect day today (Sunday), anything can happen, nothing is certain. All four of my launches today were really good. To focus exactly on what you need to do and just drive your best in all these circumstances we're facing with the championship, in the wet as well, after being in such a low position, is a massive win for the team. This really came from the heart, in wanting it and believing in it. To sit here after where I sat yesterday feels amazing. I'm so proud of these guys, of my big family, that they were with me and that we've achieved this together. I hope that all three of us have a good weekend in South Africa and a fair battle. Let the best man win."

GRX Taneco:

Niclas Gronholm P2, Timur Timerzyanov P5, Reinis Nitiss P8

Jussi Pinomaki (Team Manager): “Things were a little up and down for us this weekend, but in the end we can be happy to have two cars in the final and to be on the podium, even if we are a bit disappointed that we didn’t manage to pull off the win. Again we worked hard as a team to find good pace and we can go to South Africa for the last round in good form. It’s hard to come into this field as a wildcard driver and Reinis did a good job this weekend, especially in handling the pressure he has from his home crowd. Timur had the chance to be on the podium with a brilliant start, but the final didn’t go his way. We continue to look forward.”

Monster Energy RX Cartel:
Andreas Bakkerud P3, Liam Doran P3

Andreas Bakkerud: “I tried my best and was chasing down both Niclas and Timmy from P3 but when you are driving on the edge, as I was, it’s easy to make a mistake. I overshot the jump a little bit and ran wide at turn eight and that was my chance gone. Credit to Timmy (Hansen), he made a strong fightback after yesterday. Anyway it is good for the fans as they get to see a good show in Cape Town. I don’t think the fight will be over until the chequered flag (in the final) in Cape Town. Both Timmy, Kevin and I know what’s on the line. Now I have the job to chase and Timmy’s the leader so he will be thinking of me for the next eight weeks. So sleep well!”

GC Kompetition:

Rokas Baciuska P7, Anton Marklund P9, Guerlain Chicherit P15

Rokas Baciuska: “What a weekend. It was incredible to meet and race in front of so many fans, and the support really means so much – I raced my heart out and we really put down some great pace – we definitely had enough for the podium. The mess in the semi-final is unfortunate but was acknowledged and dealt with and we move on from here.”

EKS Sport:

Krisztian Szabo P10

Krisztian Sazbo: “My starts were great during the whole weekend, except in the semi-final. I felt fantastic in the car. In the semi-final we were simply overthinking the strategy, but I’m already smiling about that now. We wanted to find the perfect position for the start, looking after Andreas, too, but ended up starting on that place where there wasn’t any grip in the wet conditions. I got stuck in the start, I immediately tried to correct it but rest of the field were able to overtake me. That was it. I tried to make the most out of it and generally I’m not disappointed after this weekend. I have started to feel more confident in the car and the rhythm of the World Championship race weekend. I think I will get better and better to easily find the tempo, so everything is fine. It’s a difficult sport.”

ALL-INKL.COM Muennich Motorsport:

Timo Scheider P11

Timo Scheider: “And again ... great speed in wet conditions but unfortunately again no result. Got taken out again in turn one ... and you can guess who sent me off! The same mega-talented kid like last time. But great job by my team and I promise you we will not giving up till the end of the year.”

Team STARD:

Janis Baumanis P12, Pal Try P18

Janis Baumanis: Unfortunately, we couldn’t find the missing speed to get into final of home race. Thanks to all the supporters, especially those who were in grandstands. You gave me mega energy to fight here."

GCK Academy:

Cyril Raymond P13, Guillaume De Ridder P14

Guillaume De Ridder: “It was a very positive weekend overall as it was my first time here in Latvia, and I improved my lap times both in wet and dry conditions. My times were relatively good compared to gaps we’ve had at previous races, and the work done on the launch strategies have clearly paid off! I think we had the speed to be in the semis, and it’s very encouraging for the last round in Cape Town.” 

Xite Racing:

Oliver Bennett P16

Oliver Bennett: “Clutch failure on dummy grid for Q2 ... managed to bump start it to get it off the line. Huge setup issue for Q3 made the car almost impossible to drive."

ESmotorsport – Labas GAS:

Matvey Furazhkun P17

Matvey Furazhkun: “Ended this weekend after Q4 with good vibes inside. The weekend itself was really amazing, we made a huge step forward with our pace and performance and overall feel and confidence with the car. I’m really happy to be here and I hope to be back in other races too. I trained with Kevin Abbring in the simulator to prepare for this race and so the track wasn’t all new to me. The track is amazing, I really enjoyed driving here.”

JC Raceteknik:

Robin Larsson P19

Robin Larsson: “This weekend we clearly had the speed and were among the top six or seven without major problems. If you want to keep up with the guys in World RX, you really have to push, and I think we have stepped up the pace further compared to how it was in France. Then there was the disqualification in Q2. It's a tough first corner and we got tight into it. There was some contact but I was first and held my line, while the other drivers held the gas and wanted to go through. Everything happened so quickly and from my point of view I could not have done different, but the judges thought otherwise. It’s frustrating that it cost me the semi-final spot, but it’s nothing I will get bogged down in.”

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