Dumfries, Scotland — Tuesday 2 September, 2014;
Returning to Europe after making its global debut in Canada last month, Albatec Racing heads to France this weekend for round eight of the FIA World Rallycross Championship presented by Monster Energy. The Circuit de Lohéac plays host to arguably the biggest event on the 2014 schedule, where the Lochfoot-based team led by Team Principal Andy Scott, will be joined by Briton David Binks, the duo piloting a pair of 600bhp Albatec Peugeot 208 Supercars.
A recent string of fine results has seen the Dumfries businessman qualify for four of the five semi finals contested. Buoyed by that performance and by the pace shown in Lohéac last year, the 2011 British Rallycross Vice-Champion will be determined to continue that form into the weekend’s event, which has attracted nearly 40 Supercars among a quality field.
With regular driver former F1 World Champion Jacques Villeneuve busy with television commitments, the French-Canadian’s place in the squad has been taken by former Global Rallycross Championship (GRC) star Binks. A regular front runner and no stranger to domestic rallycross success, David looks set to be the dark horse in the pack. Returning to race action after his sponsor pulled out of rallycross, the Newcastle-born racer is arguably a contender for race honours, and will stop at nothing to kick-start his World RX campaign with victory.
Although home to just 700 residents, the entire village of Lohéac in Brittany turns out in force, and last year around 70,000 enthusiasts soaking up the frantic race action around the 1.1km track joined them. This year World RX of France features 37 Supercars vying for race honours, among them 2003 WRC Champion Petter Solberg, American Gymkhana star Ken Block and reigning French Rallycross Champion Jerome Grosset-Janin.
The weekend starts with scrutineering on Friday and the all-important driver draw at 16.00, which determines the grids for heat one. Track action gets underway with open practice at 11.00 on Saturday, with the first of two heats at 13.30. Sunday’s action resumes with warm-up at 08.00, the first of the final two qualifying heats at 09.15 and the semi finals at 15.00, followed by the Final at around 15.30. Further event information, live timing and streaming is available at www.rallycrossrx.com. All times remain provisional and please check the website for details of local coverage.
Andy Scott, Team Principal and driver Albatec Racing #26 :
“I’m particularly excited about racing in Lohéac as I’ve had some success there in the past and last year we came very close to qualifying both cars, so we have a bit of unfinished business. It’s been a busy time re-prepping the cars since they returned from Canada, but the team has worked hard to ensure they are both in good shape to take on the challenge of France.
“I’m very interested to test with David this week ahead of the weekend, and hopefully together we can work to develop the optimum set-up to allow us both to challenge for a strong result.”
David Binks, driver Albatec Racing #81 :
“I can’t wait to get back in the driving seat, it’s been far too long. I had a seat fitting at the team’s Dumfries workshop over the weekend and that felt great just sitting in the car, never mind driving it. I’m really looking forward to the test on Wednesday, I think we have a good base set-up from which to work, and hopefully between myself and Andy, with all his experience of the car, we can head to the race with a good package to give us the best chance of success.
“I can’t thank my sponsors enough, JBT Waste, recyclieitall, Codemasters, Harsh Ltd, Smuggling Duds, Ripla and Crosswrap for all their support and I will do everything I can to repay their confidence in me.”
Picture Credit – Albatec Racing
Dumfries, Scotland (UK) — Friday 8 August, 2014: British rallycross ace David Binks will step into Jacques Villeneuve’s Albatec Peugeot 208 at Lohéac, round eight of the FIA World Rallycross Championship presented by Monster Energy. Clashing commitments for the former F1 World Champion means the French-Canadian will be unable to race at the biggest event on the World RX schedule, which takes place over the weekend of 6&7 September.
David is no stranger to rallycross, coming into the event with a fine pedigree in Minicross, British, and Global rallycross, but his appearance in France will mark his World RX debut. The former Minicross Champion will drive the second 600bhp 2-litre, 16v Supercar, alongside Albatec Team Principal and former British Rallycross Vice-Champion Andy Scott.
Newcastle-based David contested the British Rallycross Championship in 2010 and 2011, claiming third place twice at the wheel of his Mk6 Fiesta, before embarking on a season in Global Rallycross alongside former double World Rally Champion Marcus Grönholm. Running third in the final round, a dramatic roll at SEMA ended his season, and his sponsor pulling out of motorsport left the talented 32 year-old on the sidelines for 2014.
Now with the support and backing of Harsh Ltd., Smuggling Duds, Codemasters Racing, JBT Waste Services, and recycleitall.com the rapid Briton will undergo a test session with Albatec in France immediately prior to the race, where the Dumfries-based team aims to return to semi final form.
Andy Scott, Team Principal, Albatec Racing driver #26:
“I am delighted that David is able to join the team for what is arguably the biggest event on the rallycross calendar. More than 75,000 fans flocked to Lohéac last year and while we’re naturally disappointed that Jacques is unable to race in France, I’m sure David’s return to race action will be well received while he is equally capable of securing a top result.
“We have a very good relationship and I’m very happy that we were able to secure his services. He is without question a very talented driver, with a lot of rallycross experience under his belt, and I’m confident that we will be able to provide him with the tools to do the job.”
David Binks, Albatec Racing driver #81:
“After far too long away from racing, I’m extremely excited about being asked to step into Jacques’ car and make my World RX debut at the most exciting event on the 2014 calendar. I’ve always had a very good relationship with Andy and the entire Albatec Racing team, so thank you to them for giving me this opportunity. Thanks also to my sponsors and partners, Harsh Ltd., Smuggling Duds, Codemasters Racing, JBT Waste Services and recycleitall.com whose help has made this possible.
“I’m looking to the event very much as a stepping stone to hopefully a full season in World RX next year. Sadly due to a change in the budget structure with a previous sponsor I was unable to fulfil my intentions to compete this season, however hopefully doing this event will offer the chance to show my potential and secure the necessary funds for a full assault in 2015.”