BARCELONA, Spain (September 21, 2015) — All three Olsbergs MSE Ford Fiesta ST drivers advanced to the Supercar semifinals at World RX of Spain in Barcelona on Sunday at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catlunya, earning valuable points towards the FIA World Rallycross Championship.
“We had some good fights in the qualifying heats and some good results,” said team driver Reinis Nitiss, who won his fourth heat race on the way to the semifinal, where he ultimately finished sixth.
Nitiss and teammate Andreas Bakkerud had the unenviable task of racing each other in the semifinals this weekend and ultimately neither driver made the top-three cut for the final. Bakkerud finished fourth in the semifinal round.
“It was very difficult to gain positions on this track, so a lot of it came to down to positions on the grid,” said Bakkerud, who was running third in the semifinal race until he lost a position on the Joker lap. “It’s hard when you’re starting from the outside on the grid: I tried my best and it didn’t pay off. It was a bit unlucky all weekend in that regard, but, of course, you create your luck: we need to make some changes in the earlier heats to make sure we get those better positions.”
The Circuit de Barcelona-Catlunya venue, a Formula 1 track that has hosted the Spanish Grand Prix since 1991, was transformed for its rallycross debut to a 40 percent dirt, 60 percent asphalt track configuration that featured elevation changes and a big jump.
“I felt I was driving well, with no mistakes, and drove what the car could handle on this track, but I’m still looking ahead to the remaining events to see what we can clean up,” said Bakkerud. “I won in Turkey last year, so I have a good feeling going in there and will try to use that as an advantage. The boss is already studying every little thing from this weekend to help see what we can do better.”
For his part, Timur Timerzyanov, driver of the Red Bull/Viatti Ford Fiesta ST, campaigned by NAMUS OMSE, missed the cut for the finals with a fifth-place result in his semifinal race.
In the RX Lites Cup, Olsbergs MSE driver Kevin Eriksson finished fourth and is narrowly second in the standings.
In the end, the Supercars race belonged to defending champion Petter Solberg, who took the win, ahead of Johan Kristofferson and Timmy Hansen. With three events remaining in the series, the OMSE Ford team is currently second in the FIA World Rallycross Championship team standings, behind Team Peugeot-Hansen.
The 2015 FIA World Rallycross Championship continues October 2 with the World RX of Turkey at Intercity Istanbul Park and October 16 with the World RX of Italy at Franciacorta International Circuit before concluding November 27 at the World RX of Argentina at San Luis.
ABOUT OLSBERGS MSE:
Olsbergs MSE designs, builds and operates winning competition cars for motorsport. It is recognized as the global authority in the growing sport of rallycross.
OMSE is a Ford Racing technical partner, developing the Ford Fiesta platform for international competition. Together, Ford and OMSE have earned an astonishing 23 X Games medals, including podium sweeps at the world’s leading action sports contest (Los Angeles, 2011; Brazil 2013). The team has also won every rallycross championship in the United States since the sport debuted in that country in 2010, and won the 2014 FIA World Rallycross Teams Championship.
OMSE Ford Fiesta rallycross cars are class of the field at any race they enter. The powerful, 600-horsepower all-wheel drive machines are top performers that have scored countless wins and podiums at races around the world.
Founded in 2009, the organization represents a partnership between historic Swedish industrial company Olsbergs and rallycross specialists Motor Sport Evolution. In 2013, the company expanded its operations into the United States and now has dual headquarters with operations in both Sweden and the United States.
In 2015, Olsbergs MSE campaigns winning cars in World RX, the Global Rallycross Championship, and the Rallycross Supercar Scandinavia championship. The team’s multi-series campaigns in rallycross are guided by the new team slogan “Extreme Forces,” representing their united worldwide effort. Fans can follow the team across social media platforms using the #OMSE #XForces hashtags.
ABOUT WORLD RX:
The FIA World Rallycross Championship combines all the best aspects of motor racing in one. It’s fast, competitive and spectacular. It’s bold, authentic and relatable. Within it are all the elements of four-wheel racing that you love. The 2015 championship is made up of 13 rounds: Portugal, Germany (Hockenheim), Belgium, Great Britain, Germany (Estering), Sweden, Canada, Norway, France, Spain, Turkey, Italy, Argentina.