|GRC Lites: Las Vegas race preview|
The longest GRC Lites season to date wraps up with a spectacular finale on the Las Vegas Strip.
An all-time high 14 entries will do battle, with Austin Cindric, Oliver Eriksson, and Miles Maroney due to settle the championship.
TUNE IN INFORMATION:
Wednesday, November 4, 7PM PT/10PM ET on Red Bull TV
Wednesday, November 11, 4PM ET on NBCSN and liveextra.nbcsports.com
TICKETS: Click here
EVENT SPOTTER GUIDE: Click here
2015 SPECTATOR GUIDE: Click here
LAST RACE: Déjà vu all over again: Olsbergs MSE swept another doubleheader in Barbados, once again with Oliver Eriksson winning the Saturday race and teammate Austin Cindric taking Sunday’s victory (as in Los Angeles). In both cases, OMSE secured a 1-2 finish, with Alejandro Fernandez completing the podium in third on both days.
DRIVER CHANGES: The entry list balloons to a record 14 entries in Las Vegas, with additional Olsbergs MSE cars for Gustavo Menezes, Sandra Hultgren, and Andreas Wernersson due to compete. In addition, Buhl Sport Detroit makes its GRC Lites debut with Augie Lerch behind the wheel, while Rhys Millen Racing plans to field Blake “Bilko” Williams.
THE TRACK: This year’s Las Vegas event returns to the Village Lot on the Strip, expanding to .814 miles and incorporating 13 turns. Long straightaways, busy chicanes, and a brand new Kobalt Tools Joker Lap characterize the course. Click here for more information on the track.
TEAMMATES AIM TO GIVE OMSE SECOND STRAIGHT TITLE: Austin Cindric and Oliver Eriksson rank 1-2 in GRC Lites points heading into Las Vegas, giving Olsbergs MSE a strong chance at earning its second straight Lites title (current OMSE Supercar driver Joni Wiman won the inaugural trophy for Set Promotion). Cindric leads the championship 473-470, but factoring in the series’ drop rule in worst races for full-time drivers, the advantage goes to a tiebreaker; with both drivers at 459 points after the drop, Cindric’s four wins best Eriksson’s three.
NEW DRIVERS, TEAMS MAKE DEBUTS: Much like in last year’s finale, Olsbergs MSE is giving a handful of new drivers the opportunity to make their first Red Bull GRC start. They’ll bring over Sandra Hultgren and Andreas Wernersson from Lites competition in Europe, while Gustavo Menezes makes the transition from open-wheel and sports-car experience into rallycross for the first time. Meanwhile, Augie Lerch—a veteran of karting, open-wheel racing, and off-road truck racing—steps into the brand new Buhl Sport Detroit ride, aiming to make a strong first impression in his Lites debut.
CLEAN SEASONS ON THE LINE FOR MARONEY, FERNANDEZ: Though both drivers have encountered a handful of mechanical issues in practices and heats, neither Miles Maroney nor Alejandro Fernandez have failed to finish a main event this season. They’re the only two full-time drivers in Lites who can say that, as all others who have started all 11 races have had at least one DNF due to failures or an incident.
QUOTES: A selection of quotes in advance of this Wednesday’s Red Bull Global Rallycross Las Vegas:
Austin Cindric, #77 Olsbergs MSE GRC Lites: “I think it’s business as usual—the only thing that changes for us is that it’s the last race. I have to beat Oliver to win, and Oliver has to beat me to win. He’s a great competitor, and we’ve had so many battles this year, and the 1-2 finishes in the past couple of races have been cool. But I want to win it, and I think I’ve got just as good of a shot as he does. We’ll just go on with business as usual, and it’ll be fun!”
Oliver Eriksson, #16 Olsbergs MSE GRC Lites: “Usually we have quite tight tracks, and with 10 cars in the final it’s quite rough in the first corner. It’s been quite helpful to be starting at the front line, but you have to be really consistent to do that, and that’s what I’ve practiced on this year. So far it has gone beyond my expectations, and that has been one of my strengths so far this year. I’ll do it one more time in Vegas!”
Augie Lerch, #4 Buhl Sport Detroit GRC Lites: “I think taking it one step at a time is the best plan for me. Being in a new series, with a new car and new team, makes it a learning experience for all of us. With that being said, I think as long as I keep pushing myself the bar will set itself higher every time I step on track.”