BUXTEHUDE, Germany (June 21, 2015) – The Olsbergs MSE Ford team solidified its lead in the teams standings of the FIA World Rallycross Championship on Sunday, with Andreas Bakkerud advancing to the Final in the World RX of Germany in Buxtehude.
With a sixth-place finish, Bakkerud remains third in the World Championship standings, behind Petter Solberg and Johan Kristofferson. His teammate Reinis Nitiss had a strong start to the weekend and now stands in sixth place overall.
“Rallycross is such a crazy sport that it feels like I love it and hate it at the same time,” Bakkerud said. “There’s so much adrenaline and so many thoughts going through your head, especially when you know you have the speed to win races and maybe even a championship, but in the end you also need to have luck on your side.”
He survived contact through the first turn bottleneck in Semifinals and emerged third to advance to the Final where, as he pushed through the pack, he spun in the first corner. Although he was able to recover and overtake Tord Linnerud to cross the line in fifth, he was later assessed a black flag penalty for contact during the move and demoted to sixth.
Earlier, officials had excluded Bakkerud from Heat 3 because the data logging box on his vehicle wasn’t properly connected for the race and his results were not recognized. It cost him a shot at the critical front row in his Semifinal round. “In Germany, you really can’t win from the back row because of that first turn mayhem, so losing that front-row starting to a technicality is very upsetting,” said Bakkerud.
The Estering racing circuit is a permanent rallycross track located in Buxtehude, near the Este River in Northern Germany. Narrow, with few passing opportunities and a high speed straightaway that sees cars hit their top speeds, a good start is critical as contact is virtually unavoidable through the narrow first turn.
Fellow Olsbergs MSE driver Nitiss put in a strong drive in early racing, earning a pair of top-three heat results to slot into third in the intermediate points. But a turn-one tangle in the Semifinal round ended his day early.
“Everybody is pushing hard and it’s a mess in the first corner,” said Nitiss. “I finally got a good position for the Semifinal in the first row but I was unlucky and I took damage to the front-right suspension and couldn’t finish,” he said. “I’m not happy at the moment, but that’s just how it is in our sport sometimes.”
Timur Timerzyanov finished fourth in his Semifinal this weekend, barely missing the cut for the Final. The Russian is racing the Red Bull/Viatti Ford Fiesta ST with Olsbergs MSE as an independent in the driver’s championship this season.
Next, Bakkerud, Nitiss and Timerzyanov return the Olsbergs MSE team home to World RX of Sweden for Round 6 at Holjes July 3 to 5.
It was a big weekend for the Olsbergs MSE team, with Red Bull GRC drivers Joni Wiman and Sebastian Eriksson racing in the United States at the second and third rounds of the championship in Daytona, Florida. A full report from that competition will be available shortly.
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.