Conner Martell continued his unbeaten run in the Americas Rallycross-supporting ARX2 category by winning the second part of the Trois-Rivières double header.
Martell won the first event of the one-make series at Circuit of the Americas last month, before claiming the victory in the second round of the season on Saturday. On Sunday however he didn’t quite have the smooth ride he’s become used to.
Unlike on Saturday, in qualifying Martell wasn’t always the fastest starter, and didn’t top the charts once during the three rounds of four-lap heat races, but he did finish second overall. That gave him a front row start for his semi-final, which he was able to capitalise on to qualify for the main event in a front row position.
In the final he was under pressure from Christian Brooks right from the off, with the pair making contact at the start of the race. Brooks came out of the skirmish on top though and led the field for the first lap of the race.
Martell remained close, however, making contact with the Dreyer & Reinbold driver more than once as the pair began to gap the rest of the field.
Brooks took the joker lap on lap 4, one lap later than Martell, and took third place runner Alex Keyes with him. The split strategy between the pair did little to change the race order, with Brooks emerging from the joker ahead of Martell, but the gap between both had shrunk.
By the penultimate lap, Martell was ready to make his move, and made contact with Brooks as he passed him through the final two turns. Brooks attempted to copy the move in the dying seconds of the race one lap later but it was to no avail – he followed Martell home, with Keyes taking third.
James Rimmer took fourth, ahead of DirtFish team mates Scott Anderson and Fraser McConnell. McConnell endured a dismal weekend in Canada, despite once again showing flashes of pace, and a mistake in the joker during the final all but ended his hopes of a redeeming strong result.
ARX2 Round 3 Final – Trois-Rivieres
- Conner Martell – DirtFish Motorsports – 5:25.214
- Christian Brooks – Dreyer & Reinbold Racing – 5:26.059
- Alex Keyes – Buhl Sport Detroit – 5:28.074
- James Rimmer – DirtFish Motorsports – 5:31.399
- Scott Anderson – DirtFish Motorsports – 5:37.011
- Fraser McConnell – DirtFish Motorsports – DNF
Martell’s double win in ARX2 in Trois-Rivières was made all the more remarkable given that he was also competing in the World Rallycross-supporting RX2 during the weekend. He could have completed a hat-trick of wins this weekend if it wasn’t him making contact with a tyre wall while battling for the lead in the RX2 final. He finished that race in sixth place.
Cole Keatts was another driver performing ‘double-duty’. His weekend in ARX2 was a stark contrast to Martell’s, with a retirement from the final on Saturday, and retirement in his semi-final due to a clutch problem on the Sunday. He did however finish third in the RX2 main event to take his first podium finish of the year.
Martell now holds a seven point lead over Brooks at the top of the ARX2 standings going into the final race weekend of the season.