Reigning Dunlop MSA British Touring Car champion Andrew Jordan celebrated his twenty-fifth birthday in style this weekend as he made a return to rallycross for the first time since 2007.
Driving for the Olsbergs MSE Ford team in their Fiesta ST Jordan took second place in his first heat race, despite developing a puncture on the last lap; his time would be good enough for eleventh in the overall standings.Heat 2 saw Jordan follow home Petter Solberg in a fast paced race that would give Jordan fourth place in the heats and eighth place in the overnight standings.
With the mixed weather of Saturday out of the way the sun shone through and the crowds rolled in for the second day which would consist of two more heats to decide the final 12 drivers that would make it through to the Semi finals, a target that was in Jordan’s sight as he entered the weekend.
Heat 3 was another fast-paced affair and despite finishing fifth at the chequered flag he would be promoted to third after Solberg and Tanner Foust were given 30-second penalties for not taking their joker lap – a prerequisite that all drivers must do. With Solberg and Foust out of the picture Jordan took points for ninth place overall in heat 3.
The fourth and final heat before the semi finals was a third place for Jordan, fifteenth overall, but enough to guarantee a spot in the semi-finals alongside Reinis Nitiss, Robin Larsson, Anton Marklund, Andy Scott and Jerome Grosset-Janin. Nitiss would run away with the semi-final victory but Jordan would be caught up in a frantic battle between Larsson’s Audi A1 and Marklund’s VW Polo. Jordan held fourth place through most of the race but Marklund had left his joker lap until the last lap and would come out behind Jordan. Despite the best efforts of Marklund, Jordan held on to take third place and as a result making it through to the finals.
With Jordan exceeding his pre-race hopes there was now a realistic chance of taking overall victory in the finals as he lined up with Andreas Bakkerud, Larsson, Toomas Heikkinen, Foust and Solberg.
As the cars rocketed from the start Larsson shot in to the lead while Jordan hooked on to the back of rally legend Petter Solberg’s Citroen DS3. Bakkerud and Foust took their joker laps on the opening lap and as Solberg took his he came out in a door-to-door battle with Foust, ending in a trip to the gravel trap. Jordan was now closing in on Heikkinen and dualed with the 2013 Global Rallycross champion as they entered the hairpin, Jordan would get through on the inside and storm off in chase of Larsson. With Heikkinen, Larsson and Jordan still to take their joker Bakkerud was closing in and would take the eventual win ahead of Larsson and Jordan.
“If you’d told me at the start of the weekend that I’d be on the podium today then I would have been smiling from ear to ear.” said Jordan following the race.
“I was driving like a bit of an idiot in the heats and then I had to reign it in. I started off the back of the grid for the finals but then I had a good, clean race. I couldn’t have asked for anything more.”
Jordan returns to his usual BTCC driving duties now but is expected to make another appearance in rallycross later this year.