Fourth rallycross driver championship in a row for Speed
Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross’ Scott Speed claimed the inaugural Americas Rallycross (ARX) title at the inaugural World Rallycross USA held at Circuit of The Americas. Teammate Tanner Foust did all he could in the last round by taking the victory and maximum points in Texas.
Foust won Semifinal 1, having taken a point out of Speed’s Championship lead at the Intermediate Classification, but by winning Semifinal 2, Speed was assured of the title as long as he just started the final to claim the one point required to be the champion. He did indeed take the start, on the front row alongside pole man Foust and went straight for the joker as Foust took the hole-shot into turn one ahead of Loenbro Hoonigan’s Steve Arpin. In the No. 43 Loenbro Hoonigan Ford Focus RS RX, Ken Block immediately pulled off the grid with a technical issue as the lights went green.
Subaru Rally Team USA’s Toomas Heikkinen and Patrik Sandell followed Speed into the turn one joker, Sandell making a last-moment change of decision to take the non-standard line. Arpin took his joker on the third lap and was passed by Speed, but held onto third. Foust then took his joker on lap 4 but held onto the lead to take his second win of the inaugural ARX season. Speed finished second and Arpin claimed his first ARX podium in third.
Heikkinen finished fourth in his debut for Subaru Rally Team USA and Sandell finished fifth in the last round and third in the championship point standings. Subaru’s Chris Atkinson and Xite Racing’s Oliver Bennett had a first-lap-fight in Semifinal 1 and GC Kompetition’s Liam Doran had a battle with Sandell in Semifinal 2 but finished the race with a puncture.
Scott Speed and Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross (VARX) become the first team and driver champions in ARX. This is the fourth driver championship in rallycross, in a row, for Speed and the team’s fourth collectively.In ARX2, DirtFish Motorsports driver Conner Martell won the second semifinal to lock down the ARX2 championship. In the final, he took the hole-shot from the pole position into turn one while Dreyer & Reinbold Racing’s Christian Brooks was forced out wide, allowing DirtFish’s Fraser McConnell and Keatts Motorsport’s Cole Keatts to move up. McConnell climbed into the lead when Martell was forced out on lap two by a puncture, but it was Buhl Sport Detroit’s Alex Keyes, who had taken the joker on the first lap, who moved forward to sweep the weekend at COTA with a pair of victories. Jamaica’s Fraser McConnell finished second and 18-year-old Brooks finished third. Martell and DirtFish Motorsports secured their first championship in rally or rallycross. The official rally school of ARX secured the team championship with consistent performances from its drivers, Scott Anderson, Fraser McConnell and Scott Anderson.