Mettet World Rallycross: Heikkinen wins as Solberg hits trouble
|By Hal Ridge||Sunday, July 13th 2014, 14:29 GMT|
Toomas Heikkinen became the sixth consecutive different winner in the World Rallycross Championship this season, coming out on top of a dramatic final at Mettet in Belgium.
It was pole-starter Johan Kristoffersson who made the best start, unlike fellow front row starter Petter Solberg who made a slow getaway but pulled off a fantastic move around the outside of the first corner to lie third ahead of Pontus Tidemand.
Solberg then passed Kristoffersson down the back straight on the first lap for second position before the Swedish driver took his first joker lap.
Heikkinen was next to take the extra route at the end of lap two, coming out behind Timmy Hansen and handing the lead to Solberg, who within the next half a lap suffered right rear suspension problems.
Continuing to lead with the damage, the Norweigan was hassled by reigning Junior World Rally champion Tidemand, while Hansen took his joker on lap four.
Tidemand then hounded Solberg, as Hansen's joker lap freed Heikkinen and allowed the Marklund Motorsport driver to close the gap on Tidemand, but the Audi S1 driver then retired on lap five while still chasing Solberg.
Heikkinen eventually closed right up onto the rear bumper of Solberg's Citroen DS3, while Hansen caught the lead trio on the final lap, and as Solberg took his last corner joker, Heikkinen jumped the former World Rally champion to claim victory.
Hansen came a close second and Kristoffersson claimed third to earn his maiden international Rallycross podium.
Solberg took fourth and took the championship lead in the process, while Anton Marklund finished fifth after a quiet race. Tidemand was classified sixth.
Supercar final result: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Toomas Heikkinen Marklund VW 4m05.840s 2. Timmy Hansen Team Hansen Peugeot +0.335s 3. Johan Kristoffersson Kristoffersson VW +1.148s 4. Petter Solberg Solberg Citroen +2.928s 5. Anton Marklund Marklund VW +6.694s 6. Pontus Tidemand EKS Audi -1 lap