Scott Speed

Photo: Larry Chen/Red Bull Content Pool

Red Bull GRC: Foust leads VW Andretti 1-2 in Ottawa race two

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After Steve Arpin won Saturday’s race one of the weekend for Red Bull Global Rallycross from Ottawa, Tanner Foust struck back in Sunday’s race two. Foust led a Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross 1-2, as Scott Speed finished second.

WATCH: Full Ottawa Red Bull GRC event replay

The full release and details are below.

Tanner Foust claimed the championship lead for the first time in the 2017 Red Bull Global Rallycross season with a statement victory at the Canada Aviation and Space Museum on Sunday. Foust, who finished second the day before to local favorite Steve Arpin, used a brilliant launch off the line to claim the victory and close out the doubleheader event, part of the Ottawa 2017 celebration of the 150th anniversary of the confederation of Canada.

“What a finish!” Foust said after taking the victory. “There were a lot of familiar faces from yesterday, and I think we made a lot of rallycross fans up here. That’s what it’s all about, showing this great sport to new places. This track was pretty tough, and I’d like to thank BFGoodrich for making some tough tires. I’m incredibly happy—to get a 1-2 for our team out of that is really spectacular.”

Determined to come back from missing Saturday’s final, Scott Speed carried the momentum of the morning’s Big Rig Brewery Pole Award into the heats and semifinals, sweeping his way into the top starting spot in the final. Next to him, teammate Tanner Foust had won the second semifinal, with Mitchell deJong on the outside.

After an aborted start due to a Chris Atkinson rollover, all 10 cars returned to the grid to try again. This time, Foust and deJong would both get the best of Speed off the line to run 1-2-3 in the early stages. deJong would hold off Speed for the first nine-plus laps, but on the final straightaway, Speed pulled forward to take second place by .195 seconds. Ontario native Arpin would fail to finish the race after first-lap contact, dropping him to second in the standings.

In GRC Lites, Cyril Raymond recovered from a pair of disappointing heat results to win his semifinal and take the top starting spot. He used a terrific launch in the final to take an early lead, never looking back on the way to his fourth consecutive victory. Dreyer & Reinbold Racing’s Travis PeCoy nipped Alex Keyes at the finish line to grab second, as the teammates completed the podium.

Unofficial Supercar results from Red Bull Global Rallycross Ottawa II are as follows:

  1. Tanner Foust, #34 Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross
  2. Scott Speed, #41 Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross
  3. Mitchell deJong, #24 Honda Red Bull Olsbergs MSE
  4. Sebastian Eriksson, #93 Honda Red Bull Olsbergs MSE
  5. Oliver Eriksson, #16 Honda Red Bull Olsbergs MSE
  6. Austin Dyne, #14 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
  7. Patrik Sandell, #18 Subaru Rally Team USA
  8. Cabot Bigham, #2 Bryan Herta Rallysport
  9. Chris Atkinson, #55 Subaru Rally Team USA
  10. Steve Arpin, #00 Loenbro Motorsports

The second half of the 2017 Red Bull Global Rallycross season picks up on July 8-9with a brand new event at Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis. Tickets are available now at redbullglobalrallycross.com/tickets. Red Bull Global Rallycross Indianapolis can be seen on Sunday, July 9 at 8PM ET on NBCSN.

Scott Speed’s blog: Target on my back after Memphis win

Photos: Louis Yio/Red Bull GRC
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Editor’s note: Providing a behind the scenes take during his 2017 Red Bull Global Rallycross (GRC) season, Scott Speed, driver of the No. 41 Oberto Circle K Beetle GRC for Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross (VARX), will contribute to NBCSports.com, giving readers his view from behind the visor.

In his second blog installment, Speed looks back at winning the season opener at Memphis, while having the target on his back after winning the last two series championships. His first blog is linked here

Round 2 takes over Louisville May 20-21, with coverage of Global Rallycross’ Supercar Final airing live on NBC, Sunday, May 21, at 1 p.m. ET.

The first race is a big tell tale of how the offseason has gone. After the Memphis weekend is said and done, we’ve got the biggest advantage we’ve had yet, which is a great position to be in. That said, there’s added pressure for me. I know that the team has given me a superior car, we saw that at Memphis in Round 1. It’s my job not to mess it up when we’re running that good.

With the added pressure, I’m in a position to play defense now, staying out of trouble and keeping clean. That’s a lot different of an approach than pushing every single corner and attacking every single lap in the Oberto Circle K Beetle GRC. During the break, we’re analyzing what risks we can take where, including the rough track sections or corners.

Where we’re at, it’s different but it’s a good mindset to be in.

Leaving Memphis, I definitely feel the target on my back is growing. The competition’s gunning for us. I know every time I hit the track, everybody’s out there with stopwatches and video to try and pick up what we’re doing. We’re “that car.” Obviously being in that position, we’re doing something right.

Eventually they’re going to catch on and the things we’re doing right, they’re going to get noticed and others will improve. Everybody has a good idea about the cars around them, and other teams are going to work hard after the first race, just as we continue to do at Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross.

There’s no doubt that everyone’s going to get better and faster as the season progresses. We may see some changes to minimum weight requirements come from the series, and I expect the gap to be closed dramatically if it does. I’m anxious to see the gap close in the next race. We have to take that as it is, and hopefully we will still have an advantage over others.

Heading into Round 2, we have to have the mindset that we know it’s going to be more competitive. That the bar is raised. One mistake in a heat could cost us seven points, and we don’t have a lead in the points standings enough to afford the loss after one event. Survival is key, collecting points as much as we can. With the new format this year, you don’t have to be the fastest car to do that, which is unfortunate for us being in the position we’re in. We may have come away from Memphis with the win and leading the points championship, but it’s not a very big lead and it’s still extremely competitive.

Leaving Memphis though, it feels great to get the win. Starting off the season atop the podium with Oberto and Circle K on board is great. I’m now the winningest driving in GRC history, which is a cool stat to have. But, it’s also a championship and one race won’t make or break it.

Going forward, we have to focus on consistency and risk management, not necessarily just being the fastest car on the track. Being fast is important, but what’s more important is being consistently good and finishing well in heat races under the new format. We’re always working on the car, working to step up our game. Whether from a handling standpoint or something on-track, there’s always room for improvement. We’re going to Louisville business as usual, so every time the car comes off the track, there are ways we can make it better. That’s what we’re focused on.



Red Bull GRC: Speed leads VW, Andretti 1-2 in Memphis opener

Photo: Louis Yio/Red Bull Content Pool
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The new Red Bull Global Rallycross season is underway but it’s the same driver who has ended the last two years on top, Scott Speed, who kicks off 2017 in victory lane.

The two-time defending series champion, driving the No. 41 Oberto Volkswagen Beetle GRC for Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross, led home his teammate Tanner Foust in GRC’s trip to Memphis to kick off the new season. The win is also Speed’s 12th in the series, most in Global Rallycross history. Speed and Foust also won their respective semifinals.

“(Being the winningest GRC driver in history) is a great stat, but those wins are all part of having a great team – starting with Tanner Foust, I have an incredible teammate. The whole Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross team just worked this offseason. We put in the work, and when we wanted to stop we worked some more. When you show up to the first race and you put this kind of performance down, it just makes all that work worthwhile. Big shout out to Circle K and Oberto for coming on this year, and obviously Rockstar – thanks so much, guys,” Speed said.

Foust was second in the No. 34 Rockstar Energy Beetle, starting his 2017 season one spot worse than he did last year. He swept the Phoenix doubleheader a year ago.

Steve Arpin, in his first race under the rebranded and phased Loenbro Motorsports effort, took the privateer No. 00 Jacob Companies Ford Fiesta ST onto the podium in third place. Arpin was the most consistent threat to the Volkswagen pair last year and has done well to carry that momentum into the start of 2017.

Rookies Mitchell DeJong and Oliver Eriksson finished fourth and fifth in superb efforts for Honda Red Bull Olsbergs MSE, taking their Nos. 24 and 16 Honda Civic Coupes to top-five finishes in their first weekend as teammates at the Supercars level for the Andreas Eriksson-led team.

Behind them, last year’s GRC Lites champion Cabot Bigham eighth in his first Supercars start for Bryan Herta Rallysport while Sebastian Eriksson limped to seventh in the third Honda with damage in the final. Chris Atkinson retired from the race with three laps to go in the first of two Subaru Rally Team USA WRX-STis, on what was a tough day for that team.

The final only saw eight cars take the start. Mechanical issues knocked Austin Dyne out of the weekend early in his first start with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, while damage on the initial start cost Patrik Sandell any hope of a result in his first final with Subaru.

In the 10-lap final around the 1.18-mile circuit which primarily utilized the Memphis International Raceway oval with a shorter dirt section, Speed and Foust both got the jump on a start, and were never headed the rest of the way.

The battle was for third between Arpin and DeJong, with Arpin taking the Joker on Lap 5 of 10 to move past the 2014 GRC Lites champion in his second Supercars weekend – DeJong debuted at Los Angeles last year.

GRC stays down south for its next race, Round 2 at Louisville, to be held on Sunday, May 21.

Scott Speed’s blog: My time in Red Bull GRC… so far

Speed and family. Photo: Larry Chen/Red Bull Content Pool
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Editor’s note: Providing a behind the scenes take during his 2017 Red Bull Global Rallycross (GRC) season, Scott Speed, driver of the No. 41 Oberto Circle K Beetle GRC for Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross (VARX), will contribute to NBCSports.com, giving readers his view from behind the visor.

In his first blog installment, Speed looks back on his time in the series while looking ahead on his fourth season with the team, highlighting the ups and downs while heading to season-opener Memphis defending back-to-back championship titles.

The season begins at Memphis the weekend of April 29-30. Qualifying coverage airs at 12 a.m. ET on April 30 on NBCSN, the race at 1 p.m. ET on NBC. 

Photo: Larry Chen/Red Bull Content Pool

If I could sum up my time so far in GRC in one word, it’d be “exciting” for sure. From the moment I first drove a GRC car all the way to winning two championships, it’s been ups and downs; a lot of exciting highs and lows.

Standing out, winning my first X Games gold in Brazil really started it all. It was my introduction to the sport. I was brought in to guest drive that weekend and no one expected me to win. From the first time I got in the car, I felt super comfortable. We came from being the underdog to win gold. Without that moment, I wouldn’t be racing GRC now. That race changed my career.

On the flip side, Daytona last season isn’t exactly my favorite memory. Catching on fire while leading is something I don’t want to repeat, and without that we would’ve most certainly won the race. It would’ve changed the points landscape and made last year less stressful.

But in pairing with Volkswagen and Andretti Rallycross, it obviously was a great decision by everyone from the start. I think it’s one of those things where it was a no-brainer for me. Volkswagen has had so much success globally in their rallycross programs, and Michael [Andretti] has always run a first-class operation. Everyone’s been super happy this whole time and it’s been outstanding since day one.

Heading to Memphis to start the 2017 schedule, there’s some added pressure for the three-peat, no question. But I think it’s great we’re able to continue success, working together with VARX and partnering with Oberto, Circle K and Rockstar this season. Their brands fit my personality and lifestyle so well. Between Rockstar and Oberto which I consume every day, I love representing those brands. Oberto’s great for getting nutrition, especially while I’m on the road traveling so much. So I’m very much looking forward to working with everyone this season.

Defending back-to-back championships won’t be easy with the target on our backs. We’re going to hopefully go and not make the same mistakes we’ve made in past, not going to catch on fire like I did in Daytona. I know we can win, I know we’re fast enough. That’s the difference. I’d like to focus on minimizing the downsides, the small mistakes this year.

Photo: Louis Yio/Red Bull Content Pool

I’m also already looking forward to Seattle. It’s my time to go up there and have a great showing this year, and to do it in front of Oberto’s home crowd. I’m looking forward to getting redemption out west and I know we can.

Above all, I’m looking forward to having my family at the track. It’s something I’ll continue to look forward to every time I go racing like I have. For me, racing has always been a family sport. It means everything to me with GRC being so family-friendly. My dad got me in to the sport when I was younger, and my mom has supported me along the way. For my wife and kids to be around me, to share the experiences with me, it means everything. It doesn’t feel the same when they’re not at the track. It’s something I feel very passionate about, and look forward to sharing every step of the season with my family as we work hard to three-peat.



Oberto, Circle K adorn Speed’s Andretti VW for Red Bull GRC 2017

Photo: Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross
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Two-time defending Red Bull Global Rallycross champion Scott Speed will carry Circle K Convenience Stores and Oberto All Natural Beef Jerky sponsorship for six of this year’s eight race weekends, the Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross team announced Friday.

Speed’s car had the signage in Seattle last year but was primarily blue and white otherwise. It sees his No. 41 Beetle GRC in the red, white and green livery while Tanner Foust continues in the Rockstar Energy colors, slightly altered from 2016 to a more black tone, for 2017.

“Joining Scott and the VARX team was an easy decision for us,” Oberto President and CEO Tom Hernquist said in a release. “Scott is an amazing athlete, winning back to back GRC championships and then spending his offseason competing in triathlons and running Race of Champions – we can’t wait to join the team and chase that third championship.”

“I’m psyched about our plans for the 2017 season,” Speed added. “I had so much fun representing the Oberto Circle K team in Seattle last year, and they were a large part of helping us clinch our second championship. We’re putting in a ton of hard work to come back strong this year and keep our streak alive, and since ‘you get out what you put in’ – we’re looking for a huge year.”

The new GRC season starts in Memphis at the end of April. Coverage plans for the year on NBC and NBCSN are linked here.