GRC drivers represent some of the most talented action sports athletes in the world. A significant number of GRC drivers have also had legendary careers in other action sports, from motocross to BMX to skateboarding. Rallycross provides its athletes with a similar thrill to other action sports, only with added control and safety measures. It’s not uncommon to see drivers transition from another sport to rallycross with great success.
Many former World Rally champions also choose to race in GRC. These racing professionals balance their skills in car control with the added challenge of wheel-to-wheel racing.
Global Rallycross cars roll out of the factory as production models, but receive significant improvements to chassis, engine, and safety features to bring them up to racing spec. GRC vehicles are incredibly versatile; they produce 600 horsepower and can accelerate from 0-60 miles per hour in 1.9 seconds, but are also built to withstand 70-foot jumps and contact with other vehicles. Unlike many other racing series, they also do not feature the aid of electronic traction aids. Ford, Volkswagen, Subaru, Hyundai, and Chevrolet serve as Official Manufacturer Partners of the series.
GRC teams are incredibly sophisticated and technically advanced organizations, capable of competing worldwide in various championships. GRC teams have experience competing in the World Rally Championship, Rally America, and European rallycross.
A GRC team is typically led by an engineer, who makes decisions on how to set up the car and race strategy, and is comprised of a handful of mechanics who perform maintenance work on the vehicle. An engine technician is also employed to keep the 2.0-liter engines performing at their maximum potential.
The race weekend begins with two rounds of heat races, usually consisting of four cars and six laps each, run for up to three points. The field is then combined into two groups of equal size for the semifinals, which are also six laps each. The top three finishers from each semifinal transfer into the main event, giving their teams time to work on their cars while others continue to compete. All drivers who do not make it into the main event via heat races will compete in the four-lap last chance qualifier for the final remaining qualifying spots. Ten cars then compete in the 10-lap main event.
A Penalty Box is designed to deal with on-track infractions without having to red flag or restart the race. In event of a jump start, rough driving, or joker lap infraction, offenders pull into a 50 meter lane off track, where they will be held until a track official releases them. In the event that an infraction takes place too late in the race for the Penalty Box to be used, a time penalty will be assessed.
Following its hugely-successful first visit as part of last May’s Top Gear Festival, Red Bull Global Rallycross will return to Bushy Park Barbados on October 3/4, 2015. For more information, please visitwww.redbullglobalrallycross.com
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