Rockstar Energy Drink driver Tanner Foust returns to Pacific Northwest

SNOQUALMIE, Wash. (September 28, 2014) – Rockstar Energy Drink driver Tanner Foust had a target on his back this weekend as the series returned to the grounds of an old lumber mill near Seattle for the penultimate round of the 2014 Global Rallycross Championship. Multiple hard hits in competition brought an early end to Foust’s race. “Rallycross is a contact sport and I definitely felt it this weekend,” said Foust. “A couple of times it seemed like I was a billiard ball being knocked around the table.” Even so, it was another successful development weekend for the Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross team, who are fast-tracking next year’s competition car by bringing it out for real-world testing with Foust during the final rounds of the 2014 season.  “All weekend in the car was the most fun I’ve had in a GRC event,” said Foust. “The engine sound through the barn was like an angry motorcycle and the car’s handling in those muddy conditions was amazing.” For the first time since 2011, the series returned to the grounds of the DirtFish Rally School for rallycross on an unique, purpose-built temporary course that saw cars race right through a 600-foot warehouse building. It was the third race in a week for the series, which held a doubleheader weekend in Los Angeles last Saturday and Sunday. “The loose and unpredictable course conditions here at DirtFish were the polar opposite of what we saw last weekend in Los Angeles and the Rockstar Energy Drink Volkswagen Beetle was again one of the quickest cars on the track, proving its capabilities under every racing condition,” said Foust, who returned to competition for a second weekend in the new Volkswagen Beetle. The competition car is under development for a full assault on the championship in 2015 with the Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross team. The all-wheel-drive Rockstar Energy Drink Volkswagen Beetle produces some 540 horsepower from a direct-injection 1.6-liter turbocharged inline four and achieves 0-60 miles per hour in less than two seconds. After qualifying in the top half of the field, Foust ran a smart opening heat to cross the line in third. But a clash with guest driver David Higgins during the semifinal saw him forced into the last chance qualifier. There, Foust took the win to earn a spot in the final. But Foust’s race ended in a clash with rival Ken Block as the latter driver struggled to regain control of his car after tagging the edge of the course. The two made contact and Foust landed in a ditch. He scored 10th place points.  “It is always frustrating for the team when the results on the leaderboard don’t reflect the potential of the car but that was just bad luck with Ken re-entering the track in front of me,” said Foust, who took a win the last time the series visited this venue in 2011. “I’m really encouraged by the performance we’re seeing from the Rockstar Energy Drink Volkswagen Beetle and I’m confident that results are coming — and soon.” The Seattle-area race is a popular championship stop. Organizers reported a sell-out crowd. “I have competed in the Pacific Northwest in drifting, rally and rallycross and I always appreciate the enthusiasm of the fans in this region” said Foust. “It was great to see a full house here for rallycross.” This is the debut season for the Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross team and Volkswagen has won nearly half the races so far, including Foust’s victory in July at the New York round of the championship. Rallycross is a blend of circuit racing, off-road racing and rally competition. It promises intense crowd-pleasing action in a fan-friendly track environment. As many as 10 drivers line up to start at once, piloting high-horsepower compact cars through race traffic over a challenging short course that features jumps, unbanked turns, hills and transitions between pavement and gravel.  Televised coverage of Round 9 of the championship aired on NBC Sunday afternoon. Championship competition resumes November 5 with the final round of 2014, held in Las Vegas during the popular SEMA automotive aftermarket show, and airing on NBC.  ABOUT TANNER FOUST Tanner Foust is a versatile and multi-talented driver known for his supreme car control and a proven track record of podium placements, national championships and world records. He is a three-time U.S. rallycross champion (2012, 2011, 2010) who has also won four X Games gold medals (2013, 2010, 2007), and two Formula Drift championships (2008, 2007).  He has also held multiple world records including for the astonishing Hot Wheels Double Loop Dare, which saw Foust drive a car through a 66-foot loop-the-loop. He also scored the indoor speed record for TV’s Top Gear USA, and set a distance jump record with Hot Wheels when he made a 332′ ramp-to-ramp leap in a truck at the Indy 500. His varied race experience includes multiple years of open wheel competition, the Pikes Peak Hill Climb, rally racing, various types of sports car racing and the SCORE Baja. He has represented the USA in the annual Race of Champions three times, teaming with NASCAR star Carl Edwards in 2008, Travis Pastrana in 2009, and Mick Doohan in 2010.  A year after making his overseas debut in the European Rallycross Championship in 2010 with a select campaign, Foust became the first American driver to win a round of that championship and finished both 2011 and 2012 ranked in the top three; he won two of the three rounds he entered last year. At home, Foust has been a dominant driver in rallycross since it was first introduced to the United States in 2010. When he isn’t racing, the professional driver also performs in films and on television. He is an on-air host for the U.S. version of the seminal BBC auto show Top Gear, produced by BBC Worldwide Productions and airing on the HISTORY channel. Episodes of his online documentary series, Life in the Foust Lane, are available on the Rockstar Energy Drink YouTube channel.  Foust also handles stunt driving in numerous popular films, TV shows and commercials. He is featured as a stunt driver in the Need 4 Speed film, as well as other major releases including the Bourne Legacy, Bourne Ultimatum, Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift, Dukes of Hazzard, Red Dawn and Iron Man 2 movies.
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