The FIA World Rallycross Championship presented by Monster Energy will move to Brittany in north-west France this weekend for the most well-attended round of the World Championship: the Bretagne World RX of France. Last year’s race attracted a record crowd and the 2016 edition will be even more special as it marks the 40th anniversary since rallycross was first introduced in France.

Set in the small Breton village of Loheac, a total of 72 cars will go head-to-head at the ninth round of the World Championship including the biggest S1600 entry of the year (34 entries) plus 38 600bhp Supercars that have the ability to accelerate from 0- 60mph in less than two seconds. Out of the 72 entries, there will be a total of 21 Frenchmen for the home fans to cheer on including superstar driver, Sebastien Loeb.

Loeb – who drives for Team Peugeot-Hansen alongside last year’s Loheac winner Timmy Hansen – will race at his home event for the second time, following his debut in 2013. He won’t be the only French driver competing in the seven permanent teams, however, as Yann Le Jossec will deputise for Sweden’s Kevin Eriksson in the Olsbergs MSE squad. Eriksson will instead race at a RallyX Nordic event in Sweden as he aims to secure his national title for the second year in a row.

Meanwhile, at the top of the World RX standings, the battle for the number one spot continues between Petter Solberg and Mattias Ekstrom who are separated by just four points going into Loheac. Following a collision between Anton Marklund and Solberg at the end of the final in Canada when Marklund lost the brakes in his car, Solberg’s mechanics and Volkswagen RX Sweden have had mammoth tasks to repair their cars in time for France.

Solberg explained: “The condition of my car was pretty bad after the accident that occurred after crossing the finish line in Canada. Luckily my sponsor Bertel O. Steen, one of Norway’s biggest car dealerships, proved to be an amazing partner. Immediately after the accident the CEO gave me a phone call to ensure that the company was ready to do what it takes to help us repair the car. My PSRX mechanics and our friends at Bertel O. Steen have had some long days and nights and the car now, it’s perfect. Actually, it’s better than perfect. The car will be quicker than it was before; the complete rebuild of the car has given us the chance to add in some small details to the chassis that we probably wouldn’t have done in the middle of the season.”

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Other French drivers competing on home turf include former French Rallycross Champion Davy Jeanney who will partner Kevin Hansen in the Peugeot-Hansen Academy team. Guerlain Chicherit – a quadruple World Champion in freeriding – will return to World RX in a JRM Racing MINI RX Supercar, while Adeline Sangnier will make her World RX debut at the wheel of a privately run Peugeot 207 – she is only the second ever female in RX to drive a Supercar after Ramona Karlsson.

Jean-Baptiste Dubourg scored an incredible podium finish at his home round of World RX last year and the reigning Andros Trophy champion will be hoping for a repeat performance at the wheel of DA Racing’s new Citroen DS3. A number of French Rallycross Championship regulars will also join the line-up including Patrick Guillerme, Pascal Le Nouvel, Fabien Chanoine and experienced driver, “Knapick”.

Philippe Maloigne completes the list of French drivers, driving for Albatec Racing alongside the team’s FIA European Rallycross Championship competitors Tommy Rustad and Andy Scott. Fellow Euro RX campaigners Fredrick Salsten, Michael de Keersmaecker, Ollie O’Donovan, Derek Tohill, Tamas Karai and Max Pucher will also compete. Lithuania’s Nerijus Naujokaitis will make his World RX debut in a brand new Skoda Fabia Supercar.

Running alongside the World RX Supercars at Loheac will be the FIA European Rallycross Championship for Super1600 cars. Denmark’s Ulrik Linnemann and Hungary’s Krisztian Szabo are separated by a single point at the top of the standings, while 2015 front-runner Andrea Dubourg – who finished second at Loheac last season – returns to action at wheel of a Tedak Racing Renault Clio.

Paul Bellamy, World RX Managing Director for IMG, concluded: “Loheac is just a tiny village of a few hundred people but during the first week in September, the area comes alive with more tens of thousands of people visiting over the race weekend. The circuit provides excellent action out on track with a drag race to turn one and a Joker Lap which is one of the longest of the year and includes a jump. Rallycross was first introduced to France at Loheac back in 1976 and over the last 40 years the sport has flourished, with the French Rallycross Championship helping to develop grassroots talent across the country. Last year we saw Timmy Hansen take a win on Peugeot’s home soil, and of course the atmosphere in the paddock this year will be electric with the addition of Sebastien Loeb. As well as a bumper entry, we also have a host of international and national media attending Loheac this weekend including our French broadcaster L’Equipe 21 who will broadcast live onsite.”

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From a Cooper Tire point of view

Paul Coates, General Manager – Motorsport, Cooper Tire Europe: “Loheac is another popular track and with rallycross having a strong following within France this ensures there is always a big crowd. This event attracts many of the top drivers from the national championship in France who are keen to challenge the World Rallycross teams in front of their local fan base. This track has one of the shortest start straights into the first corner which, combined with one of the longest joker laps, always means there is lots of action. We have seen previously that the teams’ tyre strategy is important in helping getting those valuable extra tenths of a second off their times. The strategy the teams use this weekend will be important because the nature of the dirt on this track makes this a particularly abrasive circuit. With each driver only having an allowance of eight dry and eight wet tyres, knowing when to change to a new set, or switching tyres around the car, will be critical.”

 

Public Timetable

Friday 2 September

1600 Drivers’ draw for Q1 and pre-event press conference in the museum 1700 Racecars depart circuit for parade in Loheac

 

Saturday 3 September

0700 Welcome centre open
0830 Photographers Briefing
1000 Twingo Cup practice
1030 World RX and Super1600 practice 1230 Q1 Twingo Cup

1255 Xtreme Show
1315 RTR Mustang Drift Show
1330 Monster Energy Rig Riot
1400 Qualifying 1 (Q1): Super1600 and World RX
1530 World RX autograph session
1540 Xtreme Show
1600 Q2: Super1600 and World RX Supercar plus Twingo Cup 1745 RTR
1800 Day one press conference at media centre
1855 Xtreme Show

 

Sunday 4 September

0745 Photographers’ briefing
0800 World RX warm-up
0830 S1600 warm-up
0850 Twingo Cup warm-up
0910 Qualifying 3 (Q3): Super1600 and World RX 1045 Xtreme Show

1105 RTR Mustang Drift Show
1120 Qualifying 4: Super1600, World RX and Twingo Cup 1300 Xtreme Show
1310 Monster Energy Rig Riot
1400 Xtreme Show
1445 RTR Mustang Drift Show
1500 World RX Supercar semi-finals
Super1600 final
World RX final
1550 World RX podium presentation
1610 World RX press conference at media centre

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2016 FIA World Rallycross Championship

Round 8 – Rallycross of France Lohéac, 02-04 September 2016

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No

Driver

Nat.

Competitor

Nat.

Car

1

Petter SOLBERG

NOR

Petter Solberg World RX Team

SWE

Citröen DS3

2

Oliver O’DONOVAN

IRL

Oliver O’Donovan

IRL

Ford Fiesta

3

Johan KRISTOFFERSSON

SWE

Volkswagen RX Sweden

SWE

Volkswagen Polo

4

Robin LARSSON

SWE

Robin Larsson

SWE

Audi A1

5

Mattias EKSTRÖM

SWE

EKS

SWE

Audi S1

6

Janis BAUMANIS

LVA

World RX Team Austria

AUT

Ford Fiesta

7

Timur TIMERZYANOV

RUS

World RX Team Austria

AUT

Ford Fiesta

9

Sébastien LOEB

FRA

Team Peugeot-Hansen

SWE

Peugeot 208

11

Fredrik SALSTEN

SWE

HTD Salsten Racing

SWE

Peugeot 208

13

Andreas BAKKERUD

NOR

Hoonigan Racing Division

USA

Ford Focus RS

15

Reinis NITISS

LVA

ALL-INKL.COM Muennich Motorsport

DEU

Seat Ibiza

17

Davy JEANNEY

FRA

Peugeot-Hansen Academy

SWE

Peugeot 208

21

Timmy HANSEN

SWE

Team Peugeot-Hansen

SWE

Peugeot 208

24

Tommy RUSTAD

NOR

Albatec Racing Ltd

GBR

Peugeot 208

26

Andrew SCOTT

GBR

Albatec Racing Ltd

GBR

Peugeot 208

29

Yann LE JOSSEC

FRA

OlsbergsMSE

SWE

Ford Fiesta ST

31

Max PUCHER

AUT

World RX Team Austria

AUT

Ford Fiesta

33

Liam DORAN

GBR

JRM World Rallycross Team

GBR

BMW Mini

43

Ken BLOCK

USA

Hoonigan Racing Division

USA

Ford Focus RS

49

“M.D.K”

BEL

M.D.K

BEL

Ford Fiesta

52

Ole Christian VEIBY

NOR

Kristoffersson Motorsport

SWE

Volkswagen Polo

57

Toomas HEIKKINEN

FIN

EKS

SWE

Audi S1

65

Guerlain CHICHERIT

FRA

JRM World Rallycross Team

GBR

BMW Mini

68

Niclas GRÖNHOLM

FIN

OlsbergsMSE

SWE

Ford Fiesta ST

71

Kevin HANSEN

SWE

Peugeot-Hansen Academy

SWE

Peugeot 208

77

René MÜNNICH

DEU

ALL-INKL.COM Muennich Motorsport

DEU

Seat Ibiza

83

Patrick GUILLERME

FRA

Patrick Guillerme

FRA

Peugeot 208

84

Hervé “KNAPICK” LEMONNIER

FRA

Hervé “Knapick” Lemonnier

FRA

Citröen DS3

85

Jean-Philippe DAYRAUT

FRA

Jean-Philippe Dayraut

FRA

Citröen DS3

86

Adeline SANGNIER

FRA

Adeline Sangnier

FRA

Peugeot 207

87

Jean-Baptiste DUBOURG

FRA

Jean-Baptiste Dubourg

FRA

Citröen DS3

88

Nerijus NAUJOKAITIS

LTU

Motorsport LT

LTU

89

Fabien CHANOINE

FRA

Fabien Chanoine

FRA

Renault Clio

92

Anton MARKLUND

SWE

Volkswagen RX Sweden

SWE

Volkswagen Polo

98

Pascal LE NOUVEL

FRA

Pascal Le Nouvel

FRA

Ford Fiesta

102

Tamás KÁRAI

HUN

Racing-Com KFT

HUN

Audi A1

111

Derek TOHILL

IRL

Derek Tohill

IRL

Ford Fiesta

121

Philippe MALOIGNE

FRA

Albatec Racing Ltd

GBR

Peugeot 208

 

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