Marcus Gronholm Ready for the Texas Kettle
by Liam Clogger at Vivacity
Global Rallycross Round 2
Firestone 550 at Texas: Preview
Fort Worth, TX, Thursday June 07, 2012 . Having started the 2012 Global Rallycross season with a clean sweep of wins in seeding, qualifying and the final of the opening round of the series at Charlotte, Marcus Gronholm progresses to this weekend's Texas Motor Speedway ready for the challenge to maintain his position at the head of the GRC field.
"It was great to kick off the year with a win, but that now makes me the man to beat in Texas, I guess," said the Finn in Fort Worth prior to the start of this weekend's event which partners the Izod Indycar Firestone 550.
Outcomes in Texas are not just crucial for the GRC points table, but also for the forthcoming X Games round of the championship where only the top twelve placed drivers will be extended an invitation to compete in the blue riband event at the Staples Centre on the streets of downtown LA. With a number of leading drivers failing to score in Charlotte and some other key competitors such as 2011 X Games Gold medallist, Liam Doran, missing the start of the season in North Carolina, the scrabble for strong points finishes will make Texas absolutely pivotal.
"I know Tanner ran me pretty close in Charlotte. And Brian Deegan will want to be in LA after his mechanical problems two weeks ago, Ken Block will also want to get some more points on the board. And Liam Doran is back, he'll be after more medals at the X Games, so I know this weekend will be hugely competitive," reflected Marcus. "But that's the way we like it, I am relishing the fight that I know is coming my way this weekend. We have a few improvements to make ourselves, some with the car and I won't excuse myself, Charlotte was okay, but I know I can go quicker, so that's what I'll be focusing on."
After a brief return home to Europe after the opening event, Marcus returns to Fort Worth for GRC round two, which has been dubbed the 'Hoon Ka-Boom,' and kicks off on Friday June 9. Early indications are that the GRC circuit at Texas Motor Speedway will be fast, with heavy braking events for the hairpins, high ambient air temperatures and a bigger jump all adding to the pressure kettle that is building in Fort Worth.
Points Standings After 1 Round:
1. Marcus Gronholm (Best Buy OMSE Ford) 22
2. Tanner Foust(OMSE Ford) 19
3. Stephan Verdier (Hyundai) 15
4. Andy Scott (Saab) 13
5. Samuel Hubinette (Saab) 13
6. Rhys Millen (Subaru) 11
7. David Binks (Serve OMSE Ford) 10
8. Travis Pastrana (Dodge) 10
9. Dave Mirra (Subaru) 8
10. Toomas Heikkenen (OMSE Ford) 8
11. Bucky Lasek (Subaru) 6
12. Sverre Isachsen (Subaru) 5
13. Tim Rooney (Subaru) 4
14. Patrick Moro (Subaru) 3
15. Ken Block (Ford) 2
16. Brian Deegan (OMSE Ford) 2