Block scores third win in five Red Bull GRC races in first Detroit race

Leave a comment

Ken Block made it three-of-five in the Red Bull Global Rallycross season in the first of two races at Detroit. The full report from the series is below:

Hoonigan Racing Division’s Ken Block earned his record-setting sixth career Red Bull Global Rallycross victory in Detroit on Saturday, passing Patrik Sandell in the race’s late stages to further extend his Supercar points lead. Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross driver Scott Speed and Red Bull Olsbergs MSE driver Sebastian Eriksson completed the podium, while Chip Ganassi Racing’s Brian Deegan and fellow Red Bull OMSE driver Joni Wiman completed the top five.

“It was quite an eventful time!” Block said after the race. “I was happy with second place and taking home some good points, but I ended up with the win. I’m the all-time winningest GRC driver now with six wins, so that’s pretty cool. I’m really stoked—that’s just a testament to how hard my team and I work.”

Block and Sandell each won both of their heat races to set up a face-off in the final, with the Swedish driver muscling past to take an early, and sizable, lead. But with three laps to go, the Bryan Herta Rallysport car encountered a mechanical issue, allowing the field to drive past him.

“I was so focused on getting a good start that I just braked a bit late to make sure that I had the momentum to get through the first corner, and it took me a little wide,” Block explained. “Patrik got around me on the inside. He was pulling away from me a little bit, but then I saw some smoke and some fire from his car. I don’t know what happened, but I just had to find the right spot to get by him and make sure people didn’t catch up to me.”

In GRC Lites, points leader Tanner Whitten took the first victory of his career for DirtFish Motorsports. Miles Maroney earned the best finish of his career for Dreyer & Reinbold Racing, passing Austin Cindric for the second position on the final lap. Cindric completed the podium, his third of the year for OMSE.

Unofficial Red Bull Global Rallycross Detroit I Supercar results are as follows:

1. Ken Block, #43 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Fiesta ST
2. Scott Speed, #41 Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross Beetle
3. Sebastian Eriksson, #93 Red Bull Olsbergs MSE Ford Fiesta ST
4. Brian Deegan, #38 Chip Ganassi Racing Ford Fiesta ST
5. Joni Wiman, #31 Red Bull Olsbergs MSE Ford Fiesta ST
6. Austin Dyne, #14 Bryan Herta Rallysport Ford Fiesta ST
7. Steve Arpin, #00 Chip Ganassi Racing Ford Fiesta ST
8 Nelson Piquet Jr., #07 SH Racing Rallycross Ford Fiesta ST
9. Patrik Sandell, #18 Bryan Herta Rallysport Ford Fiesta ST
10. Tanner Foust, #34 Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross Beetle
11. Bucky Lasek, #81 Subaru Rally Team USA WRX STI
12. Sverre Isachsen, #11 Subaru Rally Team USA WRX STI

Red Bull Global Rallycross action from Detroit continues on Sunday with round six of the championship for both Supercar and GRC Lites. Sunday’s action will be broadcast live on NBC at 4:30PM ET.

Supercross points leader Eli Tomac finds silver linings in interruption

Leave a comment

Though his Monster Energy AMA Supercross championship charge was put on hold, the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic had a silver lining for Eli Tomac.

Off the road while the season was postponed for nearly three months, the points leader was able to be present as his girlfriend, Jessica, gave birth to their daughter, Lev, on April 26

“A huge blessing for us there,” Tomac told host Mike Tirico during a “Lunch Talk Live” interview (click on the video above) in which he also joked about becoming a pro at busting off diaper changes. “That was one good blessing for us as we had our daughter on a Sunday, that would have been on a travel day coming back from the race in Las Vegas.

NBCSN

“That was probably the only positive out of all this mess was being able to be there for the birth.”

But there also could be more good fortune for Tomac as the series resumes Sunday at Salt Lake City, Utah (3-4 p.m. ET on NBCSN, 4-6 p.m. on NBC).

The final seven events will be held over 22 days in Rice-Eccles Stadium, which sits at just over 4,000 feet.

The elevation could favor Tomac, who was born and lives in Colorado and is accustomed to riding and training at altitude, which is a departure for many Supercross riders (many of whom hail from California and Florida).

COVID-19 TESTING REQUIRED: Supercross outlines protocols for last seven races

“That’s going to be the test for us,” said the Kawasaki rider, who five of the first 10 races this season. “We’re at elevation in Salt Lake, so when you’re on a motorcycle, you have a little bit of a loss of power. That’s just what happens when you come up in elevation. And a lot of guys train at sea level, and we’re at 4,000 to 5,000 feet, so cardio-wise, we’ll be pushed to the limit.

“Most of our races are Saturday nights and back to back weeks, but this go around it’s Sunday and Wednesday, so recovery is going to be key.”

Supercross will race Sunday and Wednesday for the next three weeks, capping the season with the June 21 finale, which also will be shown on NBCSN from 3-4:30 p.m. ET and NBC from 4:30-6 p.m. ET.

Tomac, who holds a three-point lead over Ken Roczen (who also recently visited “Lunch Talk Live”), told Tirico he had been riding for 90 minutes Thursday morning on a track outside Salt Lake City.

“Most of us we can rely on our past riding pretty well,” Tomac said. “The question is if you can go the distance. That’s what a lot of guys have to train on is going the distance. We go 20 minutes plus a lap. That’s what you’ve got to keep sharp is your general muscles. Within two to three days, your brain starts warming up more if you take a few weeks off the motorcycle.”

Here is the schedule and TV information for the rest of the season:

  • Sunday, May 31 (3-4 p.m. ET, NBCSN; 4-6 p.m. ET, NBC);
  • Wednesday, June 3 ( 10:00 pm – 1:00 am ET, NBCSN);
  • Sunday, June 7 (5-8:00 p.m. ET, NBCSN);
  • Wednesday, June 10 (7–10 p.m. ET, NBCSN);
  • Sunday, June 14 (7-10 p.m. ET, NBCSN);
  • Wednesday, June 17 (7-10 p.m. ET, NBCSN);
  • Sunday, June 21 (3-4:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN; 4:30 – 6:00 p.m. ET, NBC).
Eli Tomac rides his No. 3 Kawasaki in the Feb. 29 race at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia (Charles Mitchell/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images).