BTCC winner Tom Onslow-Cole wins rallycross talent search

British Touring Car Championship race winner Tom Onslow-Cole won the MSA backed RX Talent Search at Lydden Hill, earning a drive on the World Rallycross support package in Turkey

BTCC winner Tom Onslow-Cole wins rallycross talent search

Onslow-Cole will race in the RX Lites category at the October event at former Formula 1 grand prix venue Istanbul Park.

He won after a day of interviews and driving the OlsbergsMSE RX Lites car for the 12 final participants, selected from over 100 applicants of 18-30 year old MSA licence holders.

The final 12 were whittled down to four by judges before a final interview session, from which Onslow-Cole was announced the winner.

"This is incredible, what an opportunity to get into rallycross," said Onslow-Cole.

"I didn't expect to win coming into today, the competition has been really tough. I'm really happy.

"It's a fantastic sport to watch and in the car it's tenfold.

"My second run in the car felt pretty good. The transitions between Tarmac and loose are really tricky, trying to anticipate the grip changes.

"I'm not quite setting the times of the regular drivers here yet but I'm a fast learner and it will be great to race in Turkey.

"I can see rallycross being a big success and I want to be part of it."

The final four also included European Rally Championship driver Chris Ingram, British Rallycross SuperNational championship leader Dan Rooke and 2015 MSA Formula driver Sennan Fielding.

Ingram set the fastest lap time of the 12 runners, followed by Rooke, Onslow-Cole, Fielding, national rally driver Euan Thornburn and Renault Clio Cup driver Freddie Hunt.

"It's been an awesome day," said former Junior rallycross driver Ingram.

"It's been great to be back in rallycross, especially in these cars.

"This is a fantastic series, all the cars are equal, they're quick and they handle so well. I'm definitely keen to do more rallycross."

Judges included OlsbergsMSE team principle Andreas Eriksson, BTCC and World RX driver Andrew Jordan, 2001 World Rally champion co-driver Robert Reid, World RX managing director Martin Anayi and Motorsport News deputy editor Matt James.

"It was very tricky to choose a winner, especially from the final four because they were very close on lap times," said Jordan, who will race this weekend in the Supercar category.

"It came down to the racecraft, how they deal with the media and how they will be as an ambassador for the sport.

"Tom's a pro, I've raced against him and I'm sure he'll be very strong in the Lites car."

Onslow-Cole is the second British driver to be confirmed for RX Lites participation.

British Rallycross Suzuki Swift champion Tristan Ovenden will make his Lites debut this weekend at Lydden Hill.

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