LOUISVILLE, Kentucky (May 22, 2017) – Fans saw an exciting weekend of on-track action this weekend in Louisville, Kentucky, as Tanner Foust battled to improve on his podium result at the Global Rallycross opener last month.
Foust qualified his Rockstar Energy Drink Volkswagen Beetle at the top of the leaderboard, becoming the driver to beat in a rough-and-tumble two days of racing. Competition was close as drivers fought through heat races and a semifinal to advance to the main event. “I think a simple track can make for good racing and we definitely saw that this weekend,” said Foust.
The purpose-built track on the grounds of the Kentucky Exposition Center featured a mix of pavement and dirt, as well as the series’ spectacular 70-foot dirt jump. The track design allowed drivers to select from multiple fast lines and encouraged passing, while constantly changing weather left teams and drivers guessing about the best car setup. “It’s hard for the whole team when the weather is uncertain like that,” said Foust. “Everybody is constantly bracing to be ready for the conditions.”
During opening round heat racing, Foust uncharacteristically struggled on the start and then bumped the race leader in the battle back through the field. Officials swiftly dealt him a fivesecond penalty, dropping him from second to last in the heat. Foust didn’t argue.”I deserved it,” Foust said after the race. “I didn’t expect the car in front of me to get on the brakes when he did and I hit him. If someone hit me like that, I would hope officials gave him a penalty, too.”
The two-time series champion fought back to win the next two
heats and his semifinal race, and then lined up in the second slot of the front
row for one of the most exciting finals in Global Rallycross history.
Although much of the weekend’s competition took place under
threatening skies, clouds gave way to solid rain on Sunday just as the powerful
Supercars lined up for the main event. “I thought was in the best
starting position because there was a little bit of standing water on the
inside from an earlier rainstorm, but then it started to pour and we were all
When the lights went green, Foust shot off the line and raced door-to-door into the first corner with Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross teammate Scott Speed. There was plenty of bumping as cars tried to find an advantage on a slick track and, as Foust attempted to slot into line before the critical gravel section, the pack closed in around him. He found he had nowhere to go and the Volkswagens made contact.
“That was tough,” said Foust. “You want to
race clean against everybody, but I think you’re even more conscientious when
it’s your teammate at your door. It’s always in the back of your mind that
you’re both going back to the same garage and the same team of mechanics at the
end. In this case, the visibility was so bad I didn’t realize Scott and I had
hit until after the race!” The 10-lap final saw the top half of the field
in contention for a win throughout, with Foust in the mix from wire to
wire. Fans were cheering as cars raced three and four-wide through virtually
It was a photo finish at the checkered flag, with the top four drivers crossing the line within a single second. Foust narrowly missed the podium, scoring fourth-place points behind teammate Speed, in third. Sebastian Eriksson took the win, while Steve Arpin was second.
Foust currently stands second in the championship points as
the series heads to Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park for Round 3 on June 3-4.
The Global Rallycross series offers a mix of old and new
venues on the calendar this season, with stops in five exciting new cities as
well as a return to a number of familiar fan favorites. Full coverage of all 12
rounds of Global Rallycross competition airs on NBC.
SHARE IT: Wild weekend for @TannerFoust in @GRCseries this weekend. @rockstarenergy @VW
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 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 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 also 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.
When he isn’t racing, the professional driver also performs on television and handles stunt driving in popular films, TV shows and commercials. He is featured as a stunt driver in Need 4 Speed, 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.
ABOUT VOLKSWAGEN OF AMERICA, INC.
Founded in 1955, Volkswagen of America, Inc., an operating unit of Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. (VWoA) is headquartered in Herndon, Virginia. It is a subsidiary of Volkswagen AG, headquartered in Wolfsburg, Germany. VWoA’s operations in the United States include research and development, parts and vehicle processing, parts distribution centers, sales, marketing and service offices, financial service centers, and its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The Volkswagen Group is one of the world’s largest producers of passenger cars and Europe’s largest automaker. VWoA sells the Beetle, Beetle Convertible, CC, e-Golf, Golf, Golf Alltrack, Golf GTI, Golf R, Golf SportWagen, Jetta, Passat, Tiguan and Touareg vehicles through approximately 652 independent U.S. dealers. Visit Volkswagen of America online at www.vw.com or media.vw.com to learn more.
ABOUT ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT
Based in Indianapolis and led by racing legend Michael Andretti, Andretti Autosport boasts a wide racing portfolio rooted in tradition and designed for success. Together with Andretti Formula E and Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross, Andretti Autosport fields multiple entries in the IndyCar Series and Indy Lights, along with entries in the FIA Formula E Championship and Global Rallycross. The company boasts four IndyCar Series championships (2004, 2005, 2007, 2012), two Indy Lights titles (2008, 2009), one Pro Mazda championship (2013) and one USF2000 championship (2010) and has captured victory at the famed Indianapolis 500 four times (2005, 2007, 2014, 2016). Additionally the team holds two X Games Gold Medals and one Global Rallycross championship (2015). To share in the Andretti story, please visit online at AndrettiAutosport.com and follow along on Twitter via @FollowAndretti.
Rockstar Energy Drink is designed for those who lead active lifestyles — from athletes to rockstars. Available in over 25 flavors at convenience and grocery outlets in more than 30 countries, Rockstar supports the rockstar lifestyle across the globe through action sports, motor sports, and live music. More at www.RockstarEnergy.com