The all-electric FIA World Rallycross Championship returns to South Africa for the first time in four years this weekend (7-8 October), with motorsport’s most spectacular discipline set to thrill fans at Cape Town’s Killarney International Raceway.
The last time World RX visited the ‘Rainbow Nation’, spectators were treated to arguably the most memorable moment in the championship’s history, as Timmy Hansen and Andreas Bakkerud went doorhandle-to-doorhandle for title glory, clashing on the first lap of the final and ending up tied on points – with Hansen prevailing on countback.
The 2019 champion will be back at Killarney – in the shadow of Table Mountain – this weekend, as he bids to close the gap to championship-leading countryman Johan Kristoffersson, winner of the opening three rounds of the current campaign.
The World Championship has been on hold since the unfortunate incident at Lydden Hill just over two months ago, but with the season now resuming using the electric ZEROID X1 cars, the battle is back on with a vengeance.
It also means that for the first time in World RX history, there will be a completely level playing field, as all competitors take to the track in equal machinery – placing the emphasis firmly on skill behind the wheel and engineering expertise to extract the very last thousandth-of-a-second.
Six of the drivers in the field have already sampled the ZEROID X1 through guest outings in the FIA RX2e Championship during the summer. Kristoffersson won the RX2e event at Mettet in Belgium, and went unbeaten in Cape Town in 2017 and 2018 – on both occasions, having already clinched the coveted crown.
This time, the fight for honours is still very much alive, and while the Volkswagen Dealerteam BAUHAUS star will arrive in the ‘Mother City’ holding a 27-point advantage at the summit of the standings, his rivals are firmly focussed on chasing him down – with a bumper haul of points up for grabs in the first double-header of the campaign.
Just 12 points blanket the next six drivers in the classification. CE Dealer Team’s Niclas Grönholm is Kristoffersson’s closest challenger – and the winner of the 2019 event in South Africa – while Kevin Hansen sits third for Hansen World RX Team, with the Swede’s driving style well-attuned to the characteristics of the ZEROID X1 following his successful stint in RX Lites earlier in his career.
Kristoffersson and Grönholm’s respective team-mates Ole Christian Veiby and Klara Andersson are similarly well in the mix, although both will be discovering Killarney for the first time, while double DTM champion Timo Scheider is a former participant in the gruelling Cape Epic mountain bike race in Cape Town. The German reached the final at Killarney in two of his three previous appearances, and will be joined at ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport by Euro RX1 event-winner, René Münnich.
The electrifying action will begin at 09:00 local time Saturday (7 October), with every session to be broadcast live on the pioneering new Rally.TV platform. Monthly and annual subscriptions can be purchased here, while tickets are available to buy here or on the gate.
The full event timetable and entry list can be found here.