Albatec Racing have confirmed that they will field a three car team at the World RX Of France, round eight of the 2016 FIA World Rallycross Championship, taking place at the iconic Loheac circuit on 2-4 September.
The Dumfries based team will run all three Peugeot 208 RX Supercars for Team Principle Andy Scott, 2015 FIA European Rallycross Champion Tommy Rustad and French Rallycross Championship regular Philippe Maloigne as they look to take honours against the World RX, Euro RX and French RX regulars taking part in the event. This will be the third time this year that the team have fielded all three cars in an International Rallycross event, where the team run Scott, Rustad and Jerome Grosset-Janin in 2016 Euro RX.
Scott already has good pedigree at the French circuit, which has seen Albatec debut the likes of four time FIA World Touring Car Championship Champion Yvan Muller and World Rally Championship event winner Kris Meeke, where the Scotsman made the final in 2014. This will be the first time that Rustad has been in World RX competition since his podium at the 2015 World RX of Canada for Munnich Motorsport whilst Maloigne will be looking to put his recent run of success in French RX to good use as he hopes to use local knowledge as an advantage.
Scott is looking forward to returning to one of his favourite circuits:
“It’s always a fantastic event at Lohéac, with massive crowds who are very passionate about rallycross, it’s the number one motorsport in France. We always have a great weekend there where performance is boosted by the strong support of the fans, it’s almost like a home event for me,” explained Scott.
“I’m really looking forward to taking Tommy to Lohéac so he can experience what is arguably the biggest rallycross event of the year, and Philippe too, after a strong run of races in the French Rallycross Championship it will be really interesting to see how this measures up against the World RX stars.”
Rustad welcomes the chance to get more seat time in the Peugeot and has been doing his home work:
“I’m really looking forward to doing Lohéac, and being part of such a big event in the world championship with Albatec. I’m also very happy that Andy has offered me the chance to get more time in the car, which is good preparation for the next round of Euro RX,” explained Rustad.
“It’s a new track for me but I’m used to learning new tracks quite quickly, although I know it’s a high level in the world championship. I think if we can put everything together we can reach the semi-finals, and maybe even the final. I know the track is quite fast which suits me, with loads of grip on the gravel section and I’ve watched lots of videos of past races, and studied in-car footage to be as well prepared as possible.”
Maloigne is excited to be taking part in a World RX event on home turf and is ready to take on the challenge before him:
“I discovered rallycross as a spectator in 2013 at Lohéac, and raced there for the first time in 2014 in Super 1600 finishing fourth in my semi-final. For a French driver to have produced this performance in front of 70,000 French fans is a huge souvenir, but now racing in World Supercars three years after discovering the sport is simply amazing, especially aboard an Albatec 208,” explains Maloigne.
“I’m very excited about racing there alongside Andy and Tommy. The track is a true rallycross venue, with lots of grip and very fast, but it’s not just the track that makes the weekend so special. The support from the crowd is incredible and the atmosphere is among the best you’ll find in rallycross.”
The French driver adds how he’s looking to add to a very successful season in French RX so far:
“We’ve had a successful start to the season in French RX and I’m feeling very confident with the team and the car after some consistently quick times and strong results. The quality and quantity of the entry will be very high, but I’m sure that being beside such experienced and competitive drivers like Tommy and Andy is going to pull my driving level up so if we continue to work well together as we have done all season, we should be able to come away with a good result.”