The GRX Taneco team are back for another year in the 2020 FIA World Rallycross Championship with Niclas Gronholm and Timur Timerzyanov partnering together for a third consecutive season.
Gronholm and Timerzyanov will drive an evolution of last year’s Hyundai i20 Supercar in a bid to improve once again after a very strong season in 2019.
In 2018 the team came fourth in the World RX Teams’ standings, while in 2019 it climbed up to second, with Gronholm finishing fourth and Timerzyanov fifth in the drivers’ standings.
GRX Taneco Team Principal Marcus Gronholm said: “After two years of running, I can say that I am happy with our progressing performance, and I hope we can do even better in 2020.
“We have retained the driver line-up of Niclas and Timur, both of whom are fast and know the car extremely well, so we just need to keep our focus clear, stay out of trouble and hope that both drivers keep healthy this year.
If we can succeed in all of this, the success will follow.”
GRX Taneco has spent the winter break on re-engineering various components of the car and completing an extensive testing program, in order to perfect the performance of the team’s Supercars and prepare the drivers for the upcoming challenge.
Consistency is the name of the game in rallycross and the team know where there weaknesses are and how to utilise the strengths of the car.
“We had a strong package last year – the combination of the team, car and drivers was a real fit, so I feel confident going into the 2020 season. Obviously, I’m hoping to continue where I left off in Cape Town last year,” says Niclas Gronholm.
Gronholm missed the Belgian and British rounds of the championship last year due to appendicitis surgery. Without his absence at these events, Gronholm may well have been champion.
“I also think we have focused on the right things during the winter break and feel that, as long as we continue our hard work, it will pay off in the best possible way. This will be one hell of a season for GRX Taneco,” the 23-year-old Finn added.
Meanwhile, Timerzyanov won his maiden World RX event in Belgium with a phenomenal performance at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps.
The Russian is still searching for a World RX title and believes he can challenge in 2020 on a consistent basis: “For the third year in a row I’m maintaining my FIA World RX commitment with GRX Taneco – a team with so much passion, hardworking people and really fast cars.
“We’ve proven that we can win and fight for the titles, so in 2020 I will be even more focused and motivated on achieving my life-long dream.”
The FIA World Rallycross Championship will visit 10 venues once again in 2020 after the Russian round at the brand-new Igora Drive track was dropped from the calendar last week, Timerzyanov is disappointed he will not be able to race at home: “I was really looking forward on racing on my home soil at the brand-new Igora Drive track, but unfortunately that won’t happen this season.
“I am sure that in the remaining 10 rounds we will have some awesome racing with great fights and a lot of on-track action“
GRX Taneco Team Manager Jussi Pinomaki added: “It’s a real pleasure to keep working with the same core team and same drivers on this project for the third year straight. It’s been a long winter with hard work on improving the car and hopefully we have gone the right direction to be able give our drivers the best weapon to fight for the highest results.
“Last season was very tough in terms of racing and I expect nothing less this year. But we like that. We like the challenge, we like to work hard, because the emotions of a good race in such conditions are much more rewarding.”
The 2020 FIA World Rallycross Championship begins on April 18, with the season-opener in Barcelona, Spain and will conclude on November 15 in Cape Town, South Africa.