The Witness - Wheels - - RACING -

NO rain is ex­pected to fall on the plains of Spain when the world’s finest rac­ers line up for the qual­i­fy­ing or­der draw in the FIA World Ral­ly­cross Cham­pi­onship (WRC) in Barcelona to­mor­row.

Ral­ly­cross events take place on 60% tar and 40% gravel roads of about one kilo­me­tre in length, and can fea­ture one or more jumps, which makes driv­ing tac­tics para­mount.

The driv­ers are knocked out as the week­end pro­gresses and only the six fastest and bravest of them get to con­test the fi­nal.

Af­ter eight rounds to date, the driv­ers’ log has Peter Sol­berg’s World RX Team lead­ing the fray in his Citroën DS3 at 181 points, with Mat­tias Ek­ström only five points be­hind in his Audi S1.

The pair can, how­ever, ex­pect a se­ri­ous chal­lenge from the Peugeot 208 WRX driver Timmy Hansen.

Hansen was on the podium in Barcelona last year and was the high­est-scor­ing driver over the course of the week­end.

Af­ter his dis­ap­point­ment at the last race in France, Hansen has col­lected only 117 points and said his aim this week­end is to fin­ish in­side the top three once more to add to his score.

Mr Con­sis­tency and third place on the log, Jo­han Kristof­fers­son for Volk­swa­gen RX Swe­den, will also be a strong con­tender for a podium in his Volk­swa­gen Polo. He will be chased hard by the Ford Focus RS of fourth-placed Andreas Bakkerud.

High­lights of the race will be tele­vised on Su­perS­port.

Mex­ico’s lead­ing WRC driver Ben­ito Guerra shows the ac­tion that spec­ta­tors love watching in the WRC.

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