ROOKE LANDS UK RX LITES DRIVE

Bri­tish points leader will step up to WRX’S sec­ond di­vi­sion

Motor Sport News - - World Rallycross - By Hal Ridge

Bri­tish Ral­ly­cross Cham­pi­onship leader Dan Rooke will com­pete in the World Ral­ly­cross Cham­pi­onship at Ly­d­den Hill next week, driv­ing an Ols­bergsmse-run car in RX Lites.

The reign­ing Su­per­na­tional cham­pion, who switched to ral­ly­cross from au­tocross at the start of 2015, drove a Lites car at the Msa-backed RX Tal­ent Search event at Ly­d­den Hill last sea­son and made the fi­nal four, beaten to the prize drive by BTCC race win­ner Tom Onslow-cole.

The Ly­d­den drive has been ar­ranged by OMSE team owner An­dreas Eriks­son, Rooke join­ing reg­u­lar driv­ers Cyril Ray­mond and Te­jas Hi­rani in the squad.

“I hope to be there mix­ing with the top guys but given that I’ve had next to no seat time in the car it will be tough,” said Rooke. “Hope­fully I can learn in prac­tice. I know that be­ing smooth is key with these things so I’ll try not to be too ragged, just keep it tidy.”

Rooke is rac­ing an LD Mo­tor­sports Citroen DS 3 in the Bri­tish RX series this sea­son and won at Ly­d­den. He cur­rently leads the series by 16 points over five-time cham­pion Ju­lian God­frey.

“You could say the Lites is a step down [from Su­per­cars] but it is cer­tainly a step up in terms of level of the event,” he added. “Hope­fully nerves won’t get the bet­ter of me on the in­ter­na­tional stage.

“It’s go­ing to be a lot eas­ier driv­ing the car now com­pared to when I drove it last year when I had never even driven with a se­quen­tial gear­box be­fore. I’ve now got left-hand drive, four-wheel drive and se­quen­tial gear­box ex­pe­ri­ence.

“It will help that I know Ly­d­den, I’ve gone un­beaten there so hope­fully I can carry that chain on.”

The RX Lites Cup is led by Nor­we­gian Thomas Bryntes­son, who has won the first two events of the sea­son.

Rooke will step up from UK ral­ly­cross to RX Lites class

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