For the first time ever, Irwindale Speedway hosted the Global RallyCross event, partially renovating the track with hills, jumps, etc. Today's event was basically a practice round for all the drivers who participated to get a feel of the course and master it for today's championship round.
The Rally is separated into two categories: 2WD and AWD. Here's a list of the drivers and cars.
Dillon Van Way - 2002 Ford Focus
Matthew Johnson - 2004 Mazda RX‐8
Randy Zimmer - 1996 Mazda Miata
Tyler Turnbull - 2002 Ford Focus
Andrew Sutherland - 1995 Honda Civic
Lauchlin O'Sullivan - 1987 Toyota FX‐16
Jeremy Barnes - 2011 Mazda 2
Keith Covey - 1993 Honda Civic
Marcus Grönholm - Finland 2011 Ford Fiesta
Tanner Foust - 2011 Ford Fiesta
Pontus Tidemand - 2008 Ford Fiesta
Rhys Millen - 2012 Hyundai Veloster
Stephan Verdier - 2006 Subaru STI
Joseph Burke - 2006 Mitsubishi Evo 9
Marcus Dodd - 2012 Hyundai Veloster
Jimmy Keeney - 2007 Subaru Impreza WRX STi
Arkadiusz Gruszka - 2006 Mitsubishi EVO IX
Layout of the track. You can see the 70 foot gap jump.
After getting the media pass, which took about 40 minutes, I missed the first mandatory Media meeting, so I had to wait 4 hours until the next one in order to get a media vest to go into the track. I walked around the show case area to see what was going on.
Rhys Millen's area was full with surprises and I'll show you why later on. Here's the new Hyundai Veloster. 40MPG...do you want one? I wouldn't mind..
Couple of cars getting ready for the practice rounds.
One of them being Marcus Dodd's 2012 Hyundai Veloster.
Rhys Millen's Hyundai Genesis Coupe. This car is a beast!!! More info later on.
It's Tanner Foust!!!
Rockstar's area was getting a lot of attention.
Other rides that participated.
Not common at all to see a Civic Rallying.
Some cars were only parked for display, such as this 2011 Scion tC by Crawford.
Crawford Performances STI, driven by Stephan Verdier.
Matthew Johnson's RX-8.
Another peek at Rhys Millen's Genesis Coupe.
A few vendors/booths.
The booth that got the most attention was Motegi Racing because of this beautiful AE86. Random Spotlight!
Copper Tires getting ready before the opening.
As mentioned earlier, I didn't have access to the track at this time, so I wandered around the track entrance area to shoot around.
A few 2WD's finishing their rounds.
The guide for AWD's.
There's Tanner Foust on his Fiesta.
Awesomeness. I couldn't wait until I got access to the hot spots.
Last shot before I went out to grab something to eat.
After eating Mcdonald's Deluxe breakfast (it was dam good), I headed back to Irwindale Speedway to check out the scene and I spot Tanner Foust again talking with people.
Marcus Grönholm's Fiesta. Marcus Grönholm is a legendary Rallycross driver.
< Other cars getting cleaned up for the next practice rounds.
Genesis Coupe on Enkei wheels under Rhys Millen's booth.
So many cars that deserve a 'Random Spotlight', especially this Hyundai Equus.
Rhys Millen's 500HP Veloster.
An interview with ESPN (Today's event will be on ESPN3).
Around 12, I finally got access to the track area.
No 70-200mm lens here so please bare with me. :)
But after like 10 minutes, the rounds were done! So I had to walk out and wait another hour.
Best way to kill time? Checking out the cars again.
By the way, the weather wasn't so good during my drive to Irwindale Speedway, but it was clearing up later on during the day.
2011 Scion tC with a drop looks pretty good.
Uh oh. Rhys Millen caught me lurkn.
Finally I'm back to the tracks and it starts off the 2WD practice rounds.
This round was pretty interesting because it wasn't a one-by-one routine but like an actual rally cross, going all together.
Andrew Sutherland slightly crashed into the barracks and the car stopped.
He ranked 5th from yesterday's event.
There goes the practice rounds for the 2WD's.
Now to the AWD class.
Foust rolling in.
Pontus and Grönholm coming in as well.
AWD 2nd practice rounds begin!
Foust's Fiesta jumping over the 70 foot gap.
Plus his specialty, drifting!
ESPN3 guys! Tune in today!
Expect much more today. I won't be able to cover the championship rounds, neither our photographers, but we will keep you guys updated through our facebook fanpage.
The crowd was really dead, but you can't expect a lot of people showing up on a Friday's event. I'm sure today will be overcrowded.
Back to the booths and I see Crawford's STI hatchback, which participated in Gymkhana a few months ago.
This Subaru got totaled later on. Driver walked away in good condition.
Meeting before the actual eliminations.
The sky was clear and hoping everything goes well today. A few events/shows going on that I'll need to attend except the actual Global Rallycross. I apologize for not covering the championship rounds, but please check our fanpage for updated info.