Top Gear America presenter Tanner Foust won the World RX of Finland this past weekend in a VW Polo RX Supercar as a wildcard entry with the Volkswagen Marklund team. The American showed his stealthy skills by taking the win in a rainy race that turned the circuit into a puddle of mud. The Kouvola circuit already holds its name as one of the toughest circuits in the World RX Calendar.
The Ford Olsbergs MSE team took the remaining podium finishes in the Supercar category. Second place went to Andreas Bakkerud while 18-year old Reinis Nitiss finished in third to the thrill of the 15,000 spectator crowd. This is the 4th time in the season that Nittis won in the semi-final to proceed in the final race. Other than the Supercars, there were 11 TouringCar entries, 16 Super1600s and 10 entries in the supporting RX Lites Cup.
Krzyszstof Skorupski finished in fourth thus being his first top five finish in the 2014 season. Anton Marklund rounded off the top five finishes. Racing in his home country, reigning Finnish Rallycross Champion Joni-Pekka Rajala did not disappoint as he took his Skoda Fabia home in a comfortable sixth place. Team Peugeot Hansen made it to the semi-finals but failed to get in the top six. Timmy Hansen had rolled his Peugeot 208 Supercar but the team repaired it within one hour!
Petter Solberg was also another unlucky driver who failed to see the finals. His Citroen DS3 Supercar had suffered too much damage in an earlier impact and was unable to go to the finals. Former F1 World Champion Jacques Villeneuve did not make it to the Semis after his Albatec Racing Peugeot 208 Supercar suffered a puncture. In the end, Foust was awarded with the prestigious Monster Energy Super Charge Award.
Elsewhere, Russia’s Nikita Misiulia won the Super1600 category ahead of Janis Baumanis. Rasul Minnikhanov finished in third. Daniel Lundh won the TouringCar category in his Volvo C30. Jari Jarvenpaa Lundh and Torleif Lona finished in second and third driving Ford Fiestas. The next round of the FIA World RX will be in Sweden a week this coming weekend.
I’m absolutely delighted, this is such a challenging track and with rain it is unbelievably difficult. When you’re not at the front it’s murder to see where you’re going as the car is caked in mud from the moment you’re off the line. I have to say the Polo is very, very good. The VW Marklund team have done an excellent job with the car.
The rain made everything so much harder today, It’s impossible to see anything behind you at all in those conditions but it was for the same for everyone so that’s how it is. I think myself and Reinis [Nitiss] showed good pace this weekend and it’s important for the Championship standings too. I was second in Portugal, first at Lydden Hill, second here so maybe in Sweden I can be on top once again!