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Hell World Rallycross: Reinis Nitiss leads after opening day

Reinis Nitiss, Olsbergs Ford, Hell World Rallycross 2014

Latvian Reinis Nitiss heads the order at the third round of the World Rallycross Championship at Hell in Norway after day one.

OlsbergsMSE driver Nitiss set the fastest time in the first heat followed by a second fastest time behind Liam Doran in heat two.

"The car has been perfect and the result is perfect, but I'm not happy with my driving," said Nitiss. "I've made a lot of mistakes today. Tomorrow I aim to drive without mistakes and try to win the semi-final and the final."

Doran set the fourth fastest time in heat one and lies second overnight, the position going a long way to helping him put a difficult first two events of the season behind him.

Toomas Heikkinen is third after two heats, continuing his run of reaching the day one top three press conference at each of the three rounds of the championship so far.

Team Peugeot-Hansen has bounced back from a torrid event at Lydden Hill last month. Reigning European rallycross champion Timur Timerzyanov is fourth with team-mate Timmy Hansen one place behind in fifth.

Former world champions Jacques Villeneuve and Petter Solberg got involved in a battle in heat one, Villeneuve coming out on top. Solberg is seventh overnight with Villeneuve in 12th, one place ahead of Ken Block, who makes his debut in the series this weekend.

Mattias Ekstrom's new EKSRX team had a busy first day in rallycross, compounded by a half spin for Ekstrom in the second heat while chasing team-mate Pontus Tidemand, who is 11th overall, seven places ahead of the more experienced Ekstrom.

World championship leader Andreas Bakkerud broke a driveshaft in heat one, and could only set the 12th fastest time in heat two, leaving him in 21st position heading into day two.

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Nitiss storms to Hell victory