NESTE LATVIA RX TO HOST BATTLES FOR THE FINAL, TWO EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPS, AND A POINT
This weekend, on September 15 and 16, the CSDD Biķernieki Circuit will host round nine of the FIA World Rallycross Championship presented by Monster Energy, Neste World RX of Latvia. There, the current championship leader Johan Kristoffersson will try to come one step closer to his second title. Rīga will also host the final round of the FIA European Rallycross Championship in Supercar class, with Latvian Reinis Nitišs being the current favourite to win. Meanwhile, Artis Baumanis will try and increase his lead in the European Championship Super1600 class standings, and Arnis Odiņš is set to fight for his first point this season.
FIA World Rallycross Championship 2018 consists of twelve events, with tree more races set to take place after Rīga. Unlike last year, this season we will not crown the world champion here in Rīga, as there can still be changes in the standings in the final three rounds. Having won seven of the right rounds so far, PSRX Volkswagen Sweden driver Johan Kristoffersson is the current championship leader with 224 points. His closest competitor is EKS Audi Sport driver Andreas Bakkerud who currently has 165 points. It is important to note that the fight for second place in the championship is very close, as Bakkerud is followed by Petter Solberg (160 points), Timmy Hansen (158 points), Mattias Ekstrom (157 points) and 2016 Neste World RX of Latvia winner Sebastien Loeb (151 points). Maximum number of points that can be earned in a single event is 30, meaning that the standings are in no way set in stone at this point of the championship.
Latvian Jānis Baumanis, driving for STARD, will do his best to battle with the factory teams. He has earned 68 points this season, putting him ninth in the championship standings. This year, 24 of the 38 drivers have managed to earn at least one championship point.
PSRX Volkswagen Sweden, represented by Johan Kristoffersson and Petter Solberg, are also hoping to win the team championship. With 384 points through eight rounds, they have a 62 point lead over EKS Audi Sport, with Team Peugeot Total another 13 points behind in third place.
CSDD Biķernieki Circuit will host the fifth and final round of the FIA European Championship Supercar class, with three drivers still in with a mathematical chance to take home the title. SET Promotion driver and Jēkabpils native Reinis Nitišs is an overwhelming favourite – with two wins to his name, he has a 26 point lead over Cyril Raymond and a 30 point lead over last year’s champion Anton Marklund. This means that getting in the semi-final will give Nitišs the title regardless of how everything else plays out.
Situation at the top of the Super1600 standings is much less clear. There, four Volland Racing drivers are battling for the title. Artis Baumanis, winner of the first two rounds of the season, is the current leader with 87 points, but is closely followed by Lithuanian Rokas Baciuska (86 points) and Aydar Nuriev (81 point), who got significantly closer after his win in France. Hungarian Gergely Marton, who along with Rokas Baciuska has not won an event this year, is currently fourth. CSDD Biķernieki Circuit will host the penultimate round of the championship, meaning that the champion will likely be determined in the final round in Estering, Germany. Meanwhile, one more Latvian, Arnis Odiņš will be racing at his first European championship event this season, with all eyes on securing a spot in Top16 to open his points tally.
NESTE WORLD RX OF LATVIA PROVISIONAL SCHEDULE*
Thursday, September 13*
18:00-20:00 Drivers Parade at Downtown Riga
Saturday, September 15*
08:00 Gates open to the public
11:45 Qualifying 1 // EuroRX Super1600 >> EuroRX Supercar >> WorldRX
13:40 Monster Energy Rig Riot, Fan zone
14:30 Qualifying 2 // EuroRX Super1600 >> EuroRX Supercar >> WorldRX
Qualifying 3 // EuroRX Super1600
17:00 Autograph session, Fan zone
18:00 Passenger Laps // with Ford Fiesta R5, Fiesta NRC Prototype, RX2 cars
20:00 CSDD Biķernieki Circuit closed for spectators
Sunday, September 16*
08:00 Gates open to the public
08:45 Warm-up // all categories, 2-laps per car
09:45 Qualifying 3 // WorldRX >>> EuroRX Supercar
Qualifying 4 // EuroRX Super1600 >> WorldRX >>> EuroRX Supercar
12:45 Autograph session, Fan zone
13:10 Monster Energy Rig Riot, Fan zone
13:40 Semi-finals // EuroRX Super1600 >> EuroRX Supercar
Final // EuroRX Super1600
14:00 TV Livestream
15:00 Semi-finals // WorldRX
Final // EuroRX Supercar >> WorldRX
15:50 Podium, Fan zone
18:00 CSDD Biķernieki Circuit closed for spectators
22:00 Official afterparty at Coyote Fly
*Times listed in Latvia local time (CET+1; GMT+2). They are subject to change.
FIA World Rallycross Championship event Neste World RX of Latvia, taking place on September 15 and 16, 2018, is possible thanks to title sponsor Neste, as well as the Latvian Ministry of Science and Education, Live Riga, and our partner Road Traffic Safety Directorate (CSDD).
News about the FIA World Rallycross Championship event Neste World RX of Latvia are available on social media accounts on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram. When communicating on social media, we suggest using the hashtag #NesteLatviaRX, which would make it possible to gather all rallycross related posts in one place.