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PREVIEW: 2022 Nitro Rallycross – Round 5/6 Wild Horse Pass

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Credit: Nitro Rallycross Media

As one of the best racing tracks of the season returns this season, Nitro Rallycross has debuted its first double header of the season featuring night racing under the lights on Friday. Fresh new faces make their appearance to the Valley of Sun this weekend as the field grows to its largest size of the season.

2022 NASCAR top contender Chase Elliot returns for his second go at rallycross after competing in the final round last season. 2022 NASCAR Rookie of the year Austin Cindric finds his way back to rallycross after last competing in the defunct Global Rallycross series. Offroad extraordinaire BJ Baldwin and fitness influencer Demi Bagby will make appearances in the Side-by-Side class. Kris Meeke will also take place for Jenson Button at XITE Energy Racing this weekend.

Beyond the new attendees, the series regulars return for a crack at double the points available this weekend. 

RX Cartel leads the championship as Robin Larsson remains atop the standings at 208 points followed closely by his teammate Andreas Bakkerud at 185 points. Larsson and Bakkerud have both had a stellar season so far managing to top the podiums each round, excluding Bakkerud’s finish in Minneapolis where he finished fourth. They will look to push on this weekend for their most competitive event yet.

Under the same Dreyer and Reinbold Racing umbrella is Fraser McConnell fresh off his win at Glen Helen. The Jamaican driver is now third in the standings with 172 points to make a DRR top three standings. He will look for gold again amongst a sea of high-level competitors.

OMSE’s Oliver Eriksson comes in at fourth in the standings looking to have a solid and stable weekend after he’s had a rollercoaster of races this season. The youngest Eriksson brother has managed a top qualifier award along with having some good starts at the front of the pack but seems to fall short each race. The eldest, Kevin Eriksson is looking for a stroke of luck as his season hasn’t gone to plan so far. Kevin remains at 12th in the standings heading into Phoenix.

XITE Energy Racing had managed a stroke of magic last round out as Oliver Bennet was able to secure his highest position in a Nitro Rallycross race finishing fourth. With that boost to morale and points, Bennet now sits fifth in the standings. On the other hand, Jenson Button missed Glen Helen due to an on-track incident and will now miss rounds five and six both. In his place returns Kris Meeke, a World Rally Championship driver who competed in the first two rounds of the season. 

Vermont Sportscar struggled their last time out in round 4 at Glen Helen. Travis Pastrana struggled all weekend as he had difficulties with a specific turn which dropped him into the LCQ and out of the final when he couldn’t compete due to damage. Connor Martell sits just behind him as Martell lost four-wheel drive going into the final hampering any hope for a good result. The pair look to make up for their mistakes and mishaps this weekend as they sit sixth and seventh respectively.

The action begins Friday, November 10th as the weekend kicks off with its first-ever night race under the lights. Following Friday’s exclusive Group E racing, all competitors hit the track to compete for gold Saturday and Sunday at Wild Horse Pass. 

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About author
Hello, I’m Kieran the lead Nitro Rallycross contributor. I’ve been writing and doing race photography for a few years. My favorite motorsport discipline is Rallycross and I’ve been following the sport since 2016. My passion runs deep for the sport, so much that I've become a successful sim racer finishing 52nd in the world in the 2020 iRX season and competing in multiple series. Make sure to check back here often to read all things Nitro Rallycross.
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