Solberg leads the way at the 2018 World RX of Spain

by Phil Kinch

The 2018 World RX of Spain is the opening round of the 2018 FIA World Rallycross Championship and the drivers and teams have already been tested with wet conditions and a lot of mud at the Spanish Grand Prix venue.

Petter Solberg leads the standings after the first day of action in Spain, where he finished second in Q1 and was fastest in Q2 to top the overnight table. Holding second place overnight is Mattias Ekstrom who beat Solberg to the fastest time in Q1.

Mattias Ekstrom was fastest in the first Qualifying session in Barcelona. Credit: IMG / FIA World RX

Johan Kristoffersson lies in third place after two top five finishes in Q1 and Q2 and he is followed in fourth place by Ekstrom’s team-mate Andreas Bakkerud in the second EKSRX Audi Sport S1 Quattro S1 Supercar.

Kevin Hansen is the fastest of the Peugeot’s from the first day as he completes the top five in his upgraded 2017 208 WRX Supercar. STARD’s lone driver Janis Baumanis sits in sixth place overall after having steady run in Qualifying, but incurred a penalty after hitting the tyre barrier at the final hairpin.

Timmy Hansen has moved up to seventh place during the first day of the 2018 World RX of Spain. Credit: IMG / FIA World RX

Timmy Hansen is seventh, an impressive climb back up the order where he finished Q1 dead last after hitting the tyre wall. Robin Larsson is the highest OlsbergsMSE entry in eighth place.

The two GC Kompetition Megane’s compete the top ten with Jerome Grosset-Janin ahead of Guerlain Chicherit after the two French drivers were safely inside the points positions. The third Peugeot Sport entry of Sebastien Loeb is in eleventh place with GRX Taneco Team‘s Niclas Gronholm completing the vital top twelve places.

Jerome Grosset-Janin guided his GCK Competition Megane to ninth place at Spain. Credit: IMG / FIA World RX

With the first two Qualifying sessions being held in difficult conditions that has seen a soaked track being mixed with a lot of mud from the off road sections, big names like Timur Timerzyanov and Kevin Eriksson are looking for an improvement for Sunday.

Britain’s Oliver Bennett is competing in World RX this weekend with his new Xite Racing Mini Cooper Supercar as part of a nine round programme and is learning about the new car. Bennett lies in fourteenth place overnight but could be a surprise Semi-Finalist on Sunday.

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