TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec (August 8, 2015) – The Olsbergs MSE Ford team is looking to bounce back in Norway later this month after a challenging weekend at World RX of Canada in Trois-Rivieres, Quebec.
Despite a tough luck event, OMSE leads the teams’ championship, while driver Andreas Bakkerud gained a position in the standings. The Norwegian is the only driver in the field to qualify for the final at every race this year and is now second in the rankings with six races remaining in the championship.
Even so, he said he never found the pace this weekend.
“I feel good in the car but I haven’t felt quick,” said Bakkerud. “It’s easy for a driver to blame the car, the team, the engineer the spotter and everybody else but this weekend — I have to be honest — I made mistakes and I was inconsistent. There were some good lap times, but not enough of them.”
After setting strong times in practice and heat racing Friday and Saturday, Bakkerud was a solid sixth in the Intermediate points and finished third in his semifinal to earn a position in the main event.
In the final, he was fighting to keep Mattias Ekstrom at bay when the two made contact and he went wide, hitting the tires on the side of the track. He recovered to continue in the race but couldn’t regain a podium position. He finished fifth.
Teammate Reinis Nitiss, meanwhile, found himself in the wrong place at the wrong time in his semifinal. Rival Timmy Hansen, unable to turn his car after taking damage in a chaotic first corner crash, drove him into the wall, ending his race on the first lap.
“I don’t know what happened. There were a lot of hits and then I was in the wall with a broken suspension,” said Nitiss after the crash. “There was nothing I could do.”
Timur Timerzyanov, who is racing the Red Bull/Viatti Ford Fiesta ST with Olsbergs MSE as an independent in the driver’s championship this season, missed the final this weekend. He had hoped for a return to the podium in Canada after finishing third in Trois-Rivieres in 2014.
“We were starting to find the time, but today I had bad heats. And then in the semifinal, I took damage to the suspension during contact on the second corner and I couldn’t come back,” he said.
In Lites, which saw eight entries in Canada for the standalone RX Lites Intercontinental Cup, young Olsbergs MSE driver Oliver Eriksson took the win while team guest driver Cyril Raymond finished second.
The team is now looking ahead to the next World RX race in Hell, Norway, August 21-23. The Norwegian Bakkerud said he is excited to be competing at home. “Every competitive driver wants to win and I haven’t since Turkey last year,” said Bakkerud. “It’s time.”
Nitiss, too, is anticipating a happy return to the scene of his first-ever Supercars win. Last year at World RX of Norway, Nitiss became the youngest winner in series history. He was just 18 at the time. “I like to say I was born there as a driver last year,” said Nitiss. “I like the track and I’m looking forward to it. I think I know how to drive fast there. It fits for me.”
But before that, Olsbergs MSE drivers Joni Wiman and Sebastian Eriksson will travel to Washington, D.C., August 15 to race their Red Bull / Bluebeam Ford Fiesta ST rallycross cars in Round 7 of the Red Bull Global Rallycross Championship.
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.