24 August 2015

GRC Lites Race Recap: Washington DC presented by Volkswagen


IN BRIEF: Alex Keyes rebounded from a disappointing home race weekend in Detroit to win his second GRC Lites race of the season in Washington DC. As he did at MCAS New River during his first win, he held off a hard-charging Oliver Eriksson of Olsbergs MSE for the victory; Keyes’ Dreyer & Reinbold Racing teammate Miles Maroney placed third to grab the Supercar points lead.




HEAT RECAPS: Oliver Eriksson and Alex Keyes qualified first and second on Friday, establishing lane choice in the first round of heats that they would never relinquish. Both drivers won both of their heats to earn front-row starting spots for the main event. All 10 competitors advanced directly to the main event based on their second round heat finishing position.


MAIN EVENT RECAP: In the charge to the first corner, Keyes held pace with Eriksson through the first left-hand turn, established positioning on outside front row starter Austin Cindric in the next right-hand corner, and managed to pull ahead of Eriksson from there. That was all Keyes needed, as he gradually extended his lead over the pair of Olsbergs MSE drivers.


As the eight-lap final claimed championship competitors one by one, with Collete Davis pulling off track with mechanical trouble and Tanner Whitten and incoming points leader Cindric both suffering damage, Miles Maroney slotted into third and Alejandro Fernandez moved up to fourth. Neither driver could catch the top two runners, but both earned valuable championship points.

UNOFFICIAL RESULTS: The results from Saturday’s Red Bull Global Rallycross Washington DC presented by Volkswagen, the seventh round of the 2015 GRC Lites season:

1.Alex Keyes, #61 Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
2.Oliver Eriksson, #16 Olsbergs MSE
3.Miles Maroney, #24 Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
4.Alejandro Fernandez, #126 AF Racing
5.Joachim Hvaal, #99 Olsbergs MSE
6.Blas Zapag, #69 Rhys Millen Racing
7.Nur Ali, #42 AF Racing
8.Austin Cindric, #77 Olsbergs MSE
9.Tanner Whitten, #15 DirtFish Motorsports
10.Collete Davis, #07 River Racing

QUOTES: A selection of quotes from Saturday’s Red Bull Global Rallycross Washington DC presented by Volkswagen, the seventh round of the 2015 GRC Lites season:

Alex Keyes, Driver, #61 Dreyer & Reinbold Racing: “I think a lot of our success is my background. (My driver coach) Buddy Rice came out of the Lynx Racing academy and I came out of there, and that gave me a good combination. We came here, we were able to win it together and be fast. We’ve had bad luck last week in Detroit, I had a ninth and in the second day I didn’t even finish the race, but it’s nice to come back here and do what we did in New River and come out with a win.”

Oliver Eriksson, Driver, #16 Olsbergs MSE: “Throughout the weekend, it looked like it would be between me and Keyes. In the start of the final he got ahead of us and I just couldn’t keep up. But I’m happy with second place.”

Miles Maroney, Driver, #24 Dreyer & Reinbold Racing: “Yeah, we’ve had a rough weekend all weekend, I didn’t finish either of the heats so we started in the back in the final, so yeah, to get back up here was pretty special. It’s been a lot of work in the final, we’ve had a fast car all weekend, the team worked really hard and I’m just happy to be here leading the points going home to LA.”

FAST FACTS: A collection of facts from Saturday’s Red Bull Global Rallycross Washington DC presented by Volkswagen, the seventh round of the 2015 GRC Lites season:

•Alex Keyes won his second career GRC Lites main event in his sixth start of the 2015 season. Keyes has won both of his finals this year in single-race event weekends.

•Oliver Eriksson earned his fourth podium of the 2015 season on Saturday. He placed second in Fort Lauderdale, first in Daytona I, and second at MCAS New River.

•With Miles Maroney’s third place finish, Dreyer & Reinbold Racing placed both of its drivers on the podium of a GRC Lites race for the first time in the 2015 season. Team owner Dennis Reinbold is also a partner in the SH Racing Rallycross program, which won the Supercar final with Nelson Piquet Jr. on Saturday as well.

•GRC Lites newcomers Joachim Hvaal and Blas Zapag finished fifth and sixth in the main event on Saturday, respectively. Hvaal is an experienced Lites driver from Europe, while Zapag was making his debut in the class after multiple years of successful runs in stage rally in his native Paraguay.


1.Miles Maroney, 284
2.Alejandro Fernandez, 282
3.Oliver Eriksson, 267
4.Austin Cindric, 266
5.Tanner Whitten, 243
6.Alex Keyes, 187
7.Nur Ali, 143
8.Harry Cheung, 98
9.Collete Davis, 88
10.Geoff Sykes, 62
11.Brian Wong, 53
12.Jackie Heinricher, 45
13.Gavin Harlien, 36
14.Joachim Hvaal, 32
15.Blas Zapag, 27
16.Conner Martell, 22
17.Duncker Felix Jr., 7

IN BRIEF: In his 21st career Red Bull Global Rallycross start, Nelson Piquet Jr. finally topped the Supercar podium for the first time in Red Bull GRC Washington DC presented by Volkswagen. Piquet held off defending Washington DC race winner Patrik Sandell and points leader Ken Block to take the victory.

HEAT RECAPS: Jeff Ward and Nelson Piquet Jr. won Friday’s first round heats, while Piquet (with an incredible last-lap pass) and Joni Wiman won the second-round heats. Piquet earned a victory in his semifinal to grab the inside starting spot for the main event, while Patrik Sandell won the other semifinal to start alongside him. Scott Speed, who posted the fastest time in Friday’s qualifying, won the last chance qualifier.

MAIN EVENT RECAP: Ten cars charged into the first corner at RFK Stadium, with Piquet jumping out in front and establishing himself as the leader. The first half of the eight-lap final was dominated by a three-way battle for third, with Ken Block, Tanner Foust, and Steve Arpin all jostling for the final podium position.
After chasing down Piquet for the entire event, Sandell made contact from behind, pushing in Piquet’s left rear fender and leading to a tire rub. Undeterred, Piquet held on to the top spot for the final lap to take his first victory in a Supercar main event.

UNOFFICIAL RESULTS: The results from Saturday’s Red Bull Global Rallycross Washington DC presented by Volkswagen, the seventh round of the 2015 Red Bull GRC season:

1.Nelson Piquet Jr., #07 SH Racing Rallycross Ford Fiesta ST
2.Patrik Sandell, #18 Bryan Herta Rallysport Ford Fiesta ST
3.Ken Block, #43 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Fiesta ST
4.Steve Arpin, #00 Chip Ganassi Racing Ford Fiesta ST
5.Tanner Foust, #34 Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross Beetle
6.Sebastian Eriksson, #93 Red Bull Olsbergs MSE Ford Fiesta ST
7.Scott Speed, #41 Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross Beetle
8.Austin Dyne, #14 Bryan Herta Rallysport Ford Fiesta ST
9.Jeff Ward, #360 Chip Ganassi Racing Ford Fiesta ST
10.Joni Wiman, #31 Red Bull Olsbergs MSE Ford Fiesta ST
11.Logan Gomez, #77 Royal Purple Racing Ford Fiesta
12.Pat Moro, #59 PMR Motorsports Chevrolet Sonic

QUOTES: A selection of quotes from Saturday’s Red Bull Global Rallycross Washington DC presented by Volkswagen, the seventh round of the 2015 Red Bull GRC season:

Nelson Piquet Jr., #07 SH Racing Rallycross Ford Fiesta ST: “This is thanks to the team.

They’ve been making the car quicker and quicker every race, and we’re just getting more and more competitive, so I have to thank the team. They’ve been improving the car so much, Sulli’s been working hard, the whole team at SH Rallycross, to make the car quicker and more competitive every weekend. We were a bit frustrated the last few weeks with some failures and some bad results because obviously we come to the racetrack and we want to win every weekend. We’ve been together, me and Sulli, since the beginning of last year and all these great sponsors, Hydroxycut, Wix, Haus Personal Vaporizer, have been supporting us for such a long time. They deserve a win, and hopefully this is just the first one for the future—we’re going to have a long time together. I’m really happy.”

Patrik Sandell, Driver, #18 Bryan Herta Rallysport Ford Fiesta ST: “This is brand new for me, it’s a brand new team with Bryan Herta Rallysport and Kobalt who are still with me. But we tried to build this package, try to work really hard, and try to fight for the podiums in each and every race. We’ve been really fast, and now lately we’ve been able to get up onto the podium quite frequently. I’m super happy for the team, they are putting in so much work and so much effort ,so again, this podium goes to them.”

Ken Block, Driver, #43 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Fiesta ST: “Really, we were struggling this weekend—the team and I worked really hard, especially the crew, to really try and figure out the setup. It got better and better and better, and by the end I was a lot more comfortable with what we were doing out there. I just really wanted to come away with a better result than what we ended up with in the last Detroit race. Really I couldn’t ask for anything better at this point, we’re in this for the championship win so it’s good to come away with a podium and extending the lead.”

FAST FACTS: A collection of facts from Saturday’s Red Bull Global Rallycross Washington DC presented by Volkswagen, the seventh round of the 2015 Red Bull GRC season:

•Nelson Piquet Jr. won his first Red Bull Global Rallycross Supercar main event in his 21st career start. He also took the seventh podium of his Supercar career, his third of the season after third place runs in Fort Lauderdale and at MCAS New River.

•Patrik Sandell earned his third podium of the season and second podium in the past two races. All three of Sandell’s podium finishes in 2015 have come in the past four races.

•Championship leader Ken Block took his fifth podium of the season on Saturday by placing third in the Supercar main event. He has podiumed in every race this season except for Daytona I and Detroit II.

•Steve Arpin’s fourth place finish is his best result since placing third in Daytona I in June. He missed the previous final in Detroit II after falling victim to mechanical issues in the last chance qualifier.

•By placing fifth, Tanner Foust earned his best finish since Daytona II in June. It was his fourth top-five result of the 2015 season.

•Logan Gomez and Pat Moro each made their first start of the 2015 Red Bull GRC season in Washington DC. They finished 11th and 12th, respectively, with neither driver advancing past the last chance qualifier.


1.Ken Block, 302
2.Sebastian Eriksson, 261
3.Nelson Piquet Jr., 234
4.Austin Dyne, 212
5.Patrik Sandell, 205
6.Scott Speed, 203
7.Joni Wiman, 199
8.Steve Arpin, 198
9.Tanner Foust, 172
10.Brian Deegan, 76
11.Sverre Isachsen, 61
12.Bucky Lasek, 51
13.Victor Gonzalez Jr., 17
14.Jeff Ward, ineligible for points
15.Logan Gomez, ineligible for points
16.Pat Moro, ineligible for points


1.Ford, 34
2.Volkswagen, 28
3.Subaru, 19