Ollie O’Donovan takes a clean sweep in British Rallycross double-header at Pembrey

Ollie O’Donovan produced a stellar performance in rounds four and five of the Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championship this past weekend (June 23/24), sweeping his way to two wins at Pembrey Circuit.

Soaking up the Welsh sunshine on the brand-new rallycross circuit at the British Automobile Racing Club-operated venue, the high-octane championship delivered its usual mix of thrills and spills across both days. Having prevailed at Croft last time out, O’Donovan arrived at Pembrey as the form man and dually carried that momentum with him. Qualifying heats on day one saw five-time champion Julian Godfrey cement himself as the man to beat in the newly rebuilt Spencer Sport Mitsubishi Mirage.

Topping the times across all three sessions, Godfrey entered the latter stages of the day in superlative form, however he was unable to convert that into victory – with a puncture halting both his and Albatec Racing’s Mark Higgins in the final.

At the wheel of his Ford Focus, O’Donovan surged to victory, his second successive triumph in the championship whilst Steve Hill and Roger Thomas rounded off the podium in their respective machines too.

If Godfrey had been the king of the qualifying heats on day one, Higgins claimed that mantel on day two as he looked to be in irresistible form. Topping the times in every session that he took part in in the run up to the final, the Manxman looked like he would be hard to deny a second win of the season.

O’Donovan however had other ideas as he got the jump on the Peugeot driver during the second Supercar final of the weekend and despite Higgins’ best efforts, he was unable to find a way past the Irishman – who scored victory and with it strengthened his lead at the summit of the championship standings. Godfrey capped off his weekend with a third place finish.

Elsewhere, spoils were shared in the Swift Sport Rallycross Championship as Simon Ovenden and Max Weatherley took a win apiece whilst Jack Thorne and Tristan Ovenden were victorious in the MSA Supernational Rallycross Championship.

The MSA Junior Rallycross Championship proved to be a family affair as Tom Constantine and Luke Constantine prevailed. Rounding out the list of race winners were Kris Hudson and Drew Bellerby, both of whom scored victory in the BMW Mini Rallycross Championship.

The Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championship resumes on July 29 as the series makes its second visit to Croft for round six.

Brand-new Pembrey layout awaits full-throttle British Rallycross Championship

Pembrey Circuit will see its brand-new rallycross layout used this weekend (June 23/24) as the Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championship heads to South Wales for rounds four and five.

In what is the only double-header on the 2018 calendar, the first of two visits to British Automobile Racing Club-run venue is likely to set pulses races for drivers and spectators alike.

Since the series visited late last year, significant work and investment has gone into improving the rallycross section of the venue over the winter, headed up by Circuit Manager Phil Davies.

With trackside crowds continuing to grow, careful planning has been taken to create a new track layout that will produce more of an arena atmosphere for fans spectating on the bankings – allowing them to see a majority of the action unfold in front of the.

Firstly the start line, which was previously situated on the main pit straight, has been moved to just before the pedestrian crossing. From there cars will then head through Senna’s before heading into a new left-handed turn titled Toyo’s, immediately tacking Brooklands Haiprin afterwards.

Up next for competitors will be Speedway Straight, which leads into the transition from tarmac to loose, tackling the challenging Carter’s Hairpin at the same time.

Using all of their skills and experience, drivers will thread their way through the next sequence of corners, some taking the joker section, before rejoining the tarmac at Ollie’s and on to start a new lap or take the chequered flag.

The same set of corners will be used when the circuit is run in the reverse direction as well; competitors turning right instead of left off the start.

With events at Silverstone, Lydden Hill and Croft serving up three different winners, the battle for this year’s British Rallycross title is being fiercely fought over.

Arriving at Pembrey, Albatec Racing’s Mark Higgins sits atop of the championship standings having matched front-running consistency alongside his breakthrough win at Lydden. Holding a slender four-point leader, the Peugeot driver will be keen to score big and stretch his lead come the end of play on Sunday.

Higgins’ nearest challenger to the summit is five-time champion Julian Godfrey, however it is yet to be determined whether he will compete and if he does, how competitive he actually will be. Godfrey suffered a major crash at Croft which effectively wrote off the Spencer Sport Mitsubishi Mirage he was driving. With frantic work taking place to ready the machine, Godfrey could be one to watch if he lines up.

Ollie O’Donovan was a winner last time out at Croft and is always in the mix whilst Steve Hill and Mad Mark have both shown glimpses of promise along the way too. Throw into the mix the likes of Kevin Proctor and Andy Scott and you begin to see why it the depth of talent is so deep in the series.

In addition to the Supercar action there will be racing from the MSA Junior Rallycross Championship, MSA Supernational Championship (inc. Super 1600), Swift Sport Championship, BMW Mini Championship and the RX150 Championship.

Tickets will be available to purchase on the gate on Saturday and Sunday this weekend, priced at £15 per day or £36 for the full weekend (which includes camping). Children 15 and under go free when accompanied by an adult whilst gates open at 08:00 both days.

Ollie O’Donovan scores British Rallycross victory at Croft

Ollie O’Donovan made it three different winners from three events as the Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championship entertained a bumper crowd at Croft Circuit this past Sunday (May 6).

In what is the first of two visits that the mixed surface series will make to the North Yorkshire venue this year, searing temperatures meant that it proved to be a scorching day both on and off the track.

Having qualified second on the grid for the Supercar final, 2007 champion O’Donovan found himself with an easier task of taking the lead after two restarts. Firstly Steve Hill retired from the first running with engine problems before pole sitter Andy Scott jumped the start of the restart, leaving the Irishman the sole occupant of the front row.

Leading from lights-to-flag, the Ford Focus driver withstood late pressure from round two winner Mark Higgins to clinch victory by 0.061 – the closest finish the championship has seen in recent memory.

Virtue of his second place finish, Albatec Racing’s Higgins has now vaulted himself to the summit of the points standings, whilst team-mate Scott made it a day to remember for the squad as he rounded out the rostrum by finishing third.

Fourth place in the final went the way of Croft local Mad Mark Watson in his Citroen Xsara whilst Hill was classified fifth overall, despite not completing the race distance.

Julian Godfrey found himself ins serious strife in the final too as he became embroiled in Hill’s exit from the final. Entering the weekend as the points leader, Godfrey glanced the side of Hill’s Mitsubishi, sending him into a series of rolls – the five-time champion walked away from the incident unharmed.

In the MSA Supernational Rallycross Championship, Renault Clio V6 racer Tristan Ovenden made the most of the conditions to dominate proceedings – setting the fastest time in each of the three qualifiers before then winning his semi-final and the overall final.

Tom Constantine made it back-to-back victories in the MSA Junior Rallycross Championship whilst Morgan Bailey did the same in the Swift Sport Rallycross Championship.

Elsewhere, David Bell was the winner of the BMW Mini Rallycross Championship encounter whilst RX150 Rallycross Championship points leader Chrissy Palmer further cemented his status as the man to beat with another victory.

Rounding off the action was the Retro Rallycross Championship, where Barry Stewart piloted his Porsche 911 to the chequered flag, narrowly pipping former title winner Ray Morgan.

For the full classification of results, click here.

The next round of the Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championship will see the series descend on South Wales for rounds four and five at Pembrey, on June 23/24.

British Rallycross heads to Croft for third instalment of 2018 season

The Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championship speeds into Croft this Sunday (May 6) for round three of what is proving to be another highly competitive season.

Events at Silverstone and Lydden Hill, both in treacherous weather conditions, have set the scene for a captivating third chapter of the year, with a host of contenders set to challenge for victory.

Five-time champion Julian Godfrey arrives at the North Yorkshire circuit in control of the points, holding a slender four-point advantage. At the wheel of the Spencer Sport Mitsubishi, Godfrey was the best of the Brits at the season-opener, scooping 30 points in the process.

Another strong showing at Lydden Hill, finishing in second, leaves him in a favourable position for Croft. Hot on his heels however is Albatec Racing’s Mark Higgins, who has recently confirmed he will be competing in the British round of the FIA World Rallycross Championship.

On just his second outing in the series last time out, Higgins powered his Peugeot to victory in the wet at Lydden, cementing himself as a title contender. With just four points separating himself and Godfrey at the top of the standings, all eyes will be on the duo to see who gains the upper hand this weekend.

Beyond them, a mere four points separate Steve Hill, Ollie O’Donovan and Roger Thomas; all of whom also remain within striking distance of Godfrey and Higgins.

There will be plenty for local fans to cheer about too with home heroes Kevin Proctor, Mad Mark Watson and Dave Bellerby all competing across the different championships.

On top of the Supercar category, there will also be action from the MSA Junior Rallycross Championship, MSA Supernational Rallycross Championship, Retro Rallycross Championship, RX150 Rallycross Championship, BMW Mini Rallycross Championship, Super1600 Rallycross Championship and Swift Sport Rallycross Championship.

In the Retro Rallycross category, a special tribute will also be paid to Jordan Bowes, who tragically lost his life in a road accident late last year. Having undergone a winter of work and redevelopment, Bowes’ brother Jason will race Jordan’s Volkswagen Golf Mk1 in what is hoped to be the first of many outings.

Tickets are available to purchase on the gate from £18.00 with race programmes also available to buy from as little as £3.00. Track action is scheduled to get underway at 09:30 with practice before a full day of racing.

Mark Higgins victorious in second round of British Rallycross at Lydden Hill

Bank holiday Monday brought with it plenty of edge-of-the-seat, sideways thrills at Lydden Hill as the Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championship put on a show in front of a bumper crowd.

Following on from the season-opener at Silverstone last month, where five-time champion Julian Godfrey grabbed the early advantage in the points, the series descend on the spiritual home of the sport for round two.

With another strong entry list hitting the track, Albatec Racing’s Mark Higgins proved to be the man to beat as he swept his way to make it two different winners from two rounds in 2018.

Kevin Proctor opened the day by charging to victory in Q1, leading the way ahead of Godfrey and fellow Ford driver Ollie O’Donovan.

The returning Liam Doran, at the wheel of a Citroen C4, then staked his claim in Q2 as he utilised his experience and home knowledge to edge out his opponents and score victory.

Showing consistency throughout each of the heats, Higgins imposed himself on the event in the third and final round of qualifying at the wheel of his Peugeot 208 RX Supercar. Going from fourth to first in Q3, Higgins made it back-to-back wins as he produced a dominant display in his semi-final.

With heavy rain battering the circuit for the final, the former British Rally champion made a perfect start, blasting into the lead. Surviving early pressure from Doran, who would later retire, Higgins controlled the final to take victory on just his second outing.

Elsewhere, Tom Constantine was the winner in the MSA Junior Rallycross Championship whilst Supernational honours went the way of Tristan Ovenden.

Bradley Durdin was the victor in the BMW Mini Rallycross Championship, narrowly pipping Leigh-Anne Sedgwick crossing the line.

Morgan Bailey and Roger Thomas took the spoils in the Swift Sport Rallycross Championship and Retro Rallycross Championship respectively, with Chrissy Palmer rounding out the list of winners with an RX150 triumph.

For the full classification of results, click here.

The Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championship is next in action at Croft on May 6.

Julian Godfrey leads British Rallycross standings into Lydden Hill

The Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championship returns to action this bank holiday Monday at Lydden Hill with Julian Godfrey holding the early advantage.

In sub-zero conditions a little under two weeks ago, the 2018 season roared into life with a history-making event at Silverstone. Tackling the Northamptonshire venue’s all-new rallycross circuit

Whilst FIA World Rallycross Championship stars Sebastian Loeb, Timmy Hansen and Andreas Bakkerud locked out the podium, Godfrey flew the flag for the British contingent, finishing best of the rest.

Remaining at the wheel of the Spencer Sport Mitsubishi Mirage RX, five-time champion Godfrey will look to extend his advantage at the summit of the points at the iconic Kent venue.

Godfrey will have challengers from all angles however with Steve Hill, also in a Mitsubishi, keen to been on what was a strong curtain-raiser for himself and look to progress from second in the standings, where he currently sits.

The experienced Ollie O’Donovan and Kevin Proctor will be keen to get back towards the sharp end after both enduring difficult opening rounds. Elsewhere, Albatec Racing’s Mark Higgins will be another driver that is keen to continue making strides after showing glimpses of pace at round one.

Mad Mark Watson endured his fair share of bad luck at Silverstone in his Citroen so he will be another to watch as he bids to make his way up the pecking order.

Arguably the most notable additions to this Monday’s entry list are the two LD Motorsport entrants of Jake Harris and Liam Doran. Both piloting Citroen’s, Harris and Doran are proven front runners in the championship and will likely be in the mix from the outset.

Also on the billing on Monday is the MSA Junior Championship, MSA Supernational Championship, Retro Rallycross Championship, RX150 Championship, BMW Mini Rallycross Championship, Super1600 Rallycross Championship and Swift Sport Rallycross Championship.

Sebastian Loeb wins first-ever rallycross event held at Silverstone

Following months of build up and anticipation, Silverstone staged its maiden rallycross event this past weekend (March 17) with the Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championship putting on a memorable 2018 curtain-raiser, Sebastian Loeb prevailIng as the winner.

Serving as the new home for the British round of the FIA World Rallycross Championship, the Northamptonshire-based venue welcomed a bumper crowd in what proved to be arctic conditions as snow continuously fell throughout the day.

Boasting an entry list of some of the biggest names from British shores, the championship also welcomed a host of FIA World RX drivers, all of whom were keen to get an early taste of the new layout.

Team Peugeot-Hansen fielded a pair of machines for Loeb and Timmy Hansen whilst Andreas Bakkerud flew the flag for EKS. It was to be those three drivers that would prove to be the benchmark throughout the day in the Supercar category.

Bakkerud made his through the trio of heats unbeaten as he hustled his Audi S1 to three wins, placing him in a commanding position. Come the semi-finals however it was to be Hansen and Loeb that came to the fore, each winning their respective races to put them in a strong position for the final.

In what proved to be a frenetic encounter in treacherous conditions, nine-time World Rally champion Loeb produced a sensational drive to fend off his team-mate Hansen and Bakkerud, writing his name into the history books as the first outright winner at the venue.

Whilst the globetrotting world stars locked out the podium, the British contingent ensured that they didn’t all have things they’re own way. Five-time British champion Julian Godfrey, driving a Mitsubishi Mirage, made solid progress throughout the day to finish fourth in the final whilst Steve Hill was fifth.

Other notable performances included Roger Thomas in his Ford Focus whilst Ollie O’Donovan, Kevin Proctor and Mark Higgins all were in the mix too.

In the MSA Junior Rallycross Championship Marius Solberg-Hansen clinched victory ahead of Luke and James Constantine. Earlier in the day Morgan Wroot became the first official driver to win a race at Silverstone virtue of clinching top spot in his opening heat.

Jack Thorne fended off Paul Coney and Tristan Ovenden in the MSA Supernational and Super 1600 Championship final to top the rostrum whilst Keifer Hudson was the BMW Mini victor.

Simon Ovenden continued his imperious form in the Swift Sport Championship to take the win ahead of Rob Shield and Tom Llewellin. James Harrold and Chrissy Palmer rounded off the list of winners as they picked up trophies in the Retro Rallycross and RX150 respectively.

For the full list of results from all classes, click here.

The next round of the Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championships takes place on Monday 2 April at Lydden Hill.

British Rallycross ready for blockbuster season-opener at Silverstone

History is set to be made at Silverstone this weekend (March 17) as the 2018 Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championship bursts into life.

Tackling the Northamptonshire venue’s brand new rallycross circuit for the first time, the adrenaline-filled championship is set to certainly leave its mark come the end of Saturday evening.

Predicting winners in rallycross is usually difficult at the best of times and this year’s season-opener is evermore difficult due a host of different factors being thrown into the mix.

A new track brings with it a host of challenges and many will be keen to get on the pace and gain an advantage early.

Whilst reigning champion Nathan Heathcote is competing this weekend (in the RX150 class) his title is very much up for grabs and there are no shortage of contenders to choose from.

Five-time champion Julian Godfrey leads the way and he will be keen to go one better than last year. One major change for Godfrey this weekend however is that he has swapped his Ford Fiesta for the Spencer Sport-run Mitsubishi Mirage RX.

Kevin Proctor and Ollie O’Donovan know what it takes to win at the highest level and will also be ones to watch as they bid to gain an the upper hand in what is set to be a championship battle full of twists and turns.

Steve Hill, Andy Grant, Mad Mark Watson and Oliver Bennett were regular fixtures on the grid last year and all are back competing at the opening round.

Three-time MSA British Rally champion Mark Higgins will pit himself against some of British RX’s established names too as he links up with Albatec Racing

If the best of British contingent wasn’t enough for the 2018 season-opener, a handful of FIA World Rallycross Championship drivers are also on the entry list as they seek to get to grips with the new circuit ahead of the May event that is being run.

Team Peugeot Total have entered two of their Peugeot 208 machines for nine-time World Rally champion Sebastian Loeb and Timmy Hansen. Andreas Bakkerud will also get his eye in at the wheel of his EKS Audi Sport.

Guerlain Chichent rounds off the list of World RX stars as he pilots a Renault Clio R.S RX, all of which is set to further add to the spectacle.

Throw into the mix the stacked supporting cast from the MSA Junior Championship, MSA Supernational Championship, Retro Rallycross Championship, RX150 Championship, BMW Mini Rallycross Championship, Super1600 Rallycross Championship and Swift Sport Rallycross Championship and you begin to understand how this weekend is one that won’t be forgotten in a hurry.

Star-studded entry list confirmed for British Rallycross season-opener

A star-studded entry list has been confirmed for the opening round of the 2018 Toyo Tires MSA British Rallycross Championship on March 17.

Taking place at the brand-new rallycross circuit at Silverstone, no less than 14 Supercars will battle it out for supremacy as they bid to get the upper hand early on.

Leading the line-up are stars from the FIA World Rallycross Championship, with Team Peugeot Total fielding cars for nine-time World Rally Champion Sebastien Loeb and his team-mate Timmy Hansen.

In addition, fellow WRX competitor Guerlain Chicherit will also be in action at the wheel of a Renault Clio RS.

Flying flag for Great Britain are a host of big names with seven of them having won a British Rallycross Championship event in the past. With 2017 champion Nathan Heathcote moving on to the world stage, the battle for the coveted title is set to be even more fiercely fought over.

Julian Godfrey, Kevin Proctor and Ollie O’Donovan are set to lead the charge whilst the likes of Mark Higgins, Mark Watson and Steve Hill are amongst others that can’t be overlooked.

Elsewhere in the two-wheel drive MSA Supernational Rallycross Championship a diverse 16-car grid will compete whilst there will be seven young drivers are targeting MSA Junior Rallycross Championship glory.

Bumper entries in the one-make Swift Sport and BMW Mini Championships, as well as the Retro class, also add to the spectacle with World RX commentator Andrew Coley once again getting back behind the wheel, this time in Swifts.

To view the full entry list, click here.