Steve Palmer 1957-2016
Double European Rallycross champion Timerzyanov joins Team Austria for full World RX Championship assault
Former British and European rallycross racer Steve Palmer passed away last week, aged 59, after a battle with cancer.
Palmer moved from motocross to rallycross with a clubman-spec MG Metro 6R4 in the winter of 1987-’88 and finished fourth in his first final, at Lydden Hill.
He took his first win at the penultimate round of the British Championship at Swindon the same year. Palmer contested the European Rallycross Championship in 1989 and finished fourth in the 11-round series. He finished second in Austria at the start of the European Championship in 1990, but decided instead to race at home and won the British Championship.
Switching to a Ford Escort at the close of the Group B era never brought the same success.
After a break, Palmer began rallying in 1999 and contested various series in the UK, culminating in a workssupported Mitsubishi Lancer E7 Group N campaign in the for the 2003 ANCRO championship.
He is survived by his father Gerry, wife Karen and sons Craig and David. Two-time European Rallycross champion Timur Timerzyanov and 2015 Euro RX Super1600 champion Janis Baumanis will race Ford Fiestas for World RX Team Austria in the 2016 FIA World Rallycross Championship.
Team owner and driver Max Pucher will race a third car for the team at selected World RX events and in the five-round European Rallycross Championship.
Timerzyanov won the Euro RX series in 2012 and 2013, but hasn’t won an event since Finland in 2012. The Russian raced for Team PeugeotHansen and Ford Olsbergs MSE in 2014 and 2015 respectively with limited success, but believes the Austrian squad is a good choice for 2016.
“I made a conscious decision to join a great team with an amazing car [for 2016],” said Timerzyanov. “The level of the championship is growing, including team and car development, plus more fantastic drivers are joining all the time. I’m really happy to be a full-time member in such a dynamic team. I’m just waiting for the light to go green.”
Last year’s driver Manfred Stohl remains with the team in an engineering capacity.