De Ridder scores podium with JC Raceteknik in Canada
For the second event in a row, Belgian star Guillaume De Ridder finished on the RX2 International Series podium with the JC Raceteknik team, this time out at Trois-Rivieres in Canada (August 6).
De Ridder climbed from the third row of the grid in the all-important final to be an impressive second by turn two, and came out on top of a four-way battle for the position after taking his joker on lap three, to equal his best ever finish, achieved in the previous round at Holjes.
The Canadian event was hit by challenging conditions, heavy rain causing a slippery Trois-Rivieres circuit and delays on the opening day.
Norwegian driver Sondre Evjen was fourth in Q1 but raced in the worst of the conditions in Q2 and was only 13th quickest. Fourth and sixth on day two left the 2016 Latvia RX winner sixth in the Intermediate Classification, before he finished fourth in semi-final two.
Swede William Nilsson was inside the top-10 in the competitive RX2 17-car field throughout the event and set a best time of fourth in Q2. The 17-year old was seventh in the Intermediate Classification but lost out at the start in semi-final one, got held up in traffic and finished fifth.
Despite team owner Joel Christoffersson’s experience of running Supercars for star drivers in the USA, the Canadian event was the first in North America for JC Raceteknik as a team. The squad will also race in South Africa for the first time later in the year, for the final round of the RX2 International Series in November. Before then, the squad returns to Europe for events in the RallyX Nordic Series and RX2.
Joel Christoffersson, Team Principal :
“It’s great for the team and of course Guillaume to finish on the podium and get two in a row. I’m really happy for him, he had the speed all weekend but we struggled a lot today with all three cars in the dry conditions. We had the speed on Saturday, both William and Sondre were very good in practice. Q1 was good and William was happy with fourth in Q2, but then we had some rain for Sondre so he was at the back in the field. It’s really hard to pass around here. We were happy with the positions going into the semi-finals but couldn’t improve - that’s how it is, we need to come back stronger. Overall we are happy with a podium and looking are forward to France.”
RX2: Guillaume De Ridder (BEL) :
“This result is quite unexpected for me. We were a bit unlucky today in Q4 because of a technical problem, but we’re on the podium so that’s great. After starting P5 in the final the result is completely unexpected in fact. It was the first time racing outside Europe for me, it’s great for us to discover new things and new tracks. I had a good start in the final and was directly behind Cyril (Raymond) in P2. I made two mistakes, so he took a bit of a gap. It was tough to keep Tanner (Whitten) and (Dan) Rooke behind, but we had a great battle, so it’s a really nice second place for me.”
RX2: Sondre Evjen (NOR) :
“It was a really good weekend for me apart from Q2 when it rained only for our race. I was fourth, fourth and sixth in the other Qs, so I’m really happy with that. I made a bad start in the semi-final, but had good pace from the second and third laps, but by then it was too late. It’s too narrow to overtake round here – if you think you have enough space then it just turns into a tight corner and you’re just stuck behind. We’ll just have to start fresh at the next race.”
RX2: William Nilsson (SWE) :
"Of course I'm sad and disappointed because you always want to get into the final. It was a tough event with a lot of traffic, impacts and difficult starting positions on the outside of the grid. Much has been against me this weekend but at the same time I can take several lessons from here. The track was very different from the circuits we have in Europe, so it was good for me to experience it.”
RX2 International Series, Trois-Rivieres, Canada Result:
1 Cyril Raymond (FRA)
2 Guillaume De Ridder (BEL)
3 Tanner Whitten (USA)
4 Vasily Gryazin (RUS)
5 Simon Olofsson (SWE)
6 Dan Rooke (GBR)
7 Sondre Evjen (NOR)
8 William Nilsson (SWE)
RX2 International Series standings:
1 Cyril Raymond (FRA) 138
2 Dan Rooke (GBR) 124
3 Guillaume De Ridder (BEL) 89
4 Tanner Whitten (USA) 63
5 William Nilsson (SWE) 75
6 Simon Olofsson (SWE) 72
8 Sondre Evjen (NOR) 59
15 Marcus Hoglund (SWE) 18