IN BRIEF: GRC Lites points leader Cabot Bigham finally broke through for his first career victory in Washington DC on Saturday, taking the win in front of numerous friends and family from the area. Bigham held off defending Lites champion Oliver Eriksson and fellow rookie title contender Miki Weckstrom for the top spot.
HEAT RECAPS: Friday’s first round of heats saw Bigham and Travis PeCoy take the victories, with PeCoy earning the first heat win of his career for the AF Racing Team in the process. Bigham also won his second round heat, but a broken driveshaft would keep PeCoy from matching his fellow rookie; instead, it was Weckstrom who would take the other victory and top starting spot for the final.
MAIN EVENT RECAP: Though Weckstrom’s higher qualifying spot (second to Bigham’s third) enabled him to hold the inside lane on the first row of the final, it was Bigham who would come around the course in first place. Weckstrom and defending race winner Alex Keyes trailed him, but Eriksson would soon find his way past both drivers.
From there, it was a head-to-head battle between the former champion and current points leader for the top spot. But while the Swedish prodigy made it close, he couldn’t quite find a way around the American rookie, with Finland’s Weckstrom ensuring that three different countries would be represented on the podium. PeCoy recovered from a last chance qualifier appearance to take fourth, and Keyes rounded out the top five.
UNOFFICIAL RESULTS: The results from Saturday’s Red Bull Global Rallycross Washington DC, the eighth round of the 2016 GRC Lites season:
- Cabot Bigham, #2 Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
- Oliver Eriksson, #16 Olsbergs MSE X Forces
- Miki Weckstrom, #45 Olsbergs MSE X Forces
- Travis PeCoy, #3 AF Racing Team
- Alex Keyes, #24 Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
- Alejandro Fernandez, #126 AF Racing Team
- Christian Brooks, #44 AF Racing Team
- Sandra Hultgren, #51 Olsbergs MSE X Forces
- Jon Bennett, #54 CORE autosport
- Conner Martell, #21 DirtFish Motorsports
- Cole Keatts, #53 Olsbergs MSE X Forces
- Colin Braun, #56 CORE autosport
QUOTES: A selection of quotes from Saturday’s Red Bull Global Rallycross Washington DC, the eighth round of the 2016 GRC Lites season:
Cabot Bigham, #2 Dreyer & Reinbold Racing: “First of all, I had an amazing car and the guys worked all weekend just to get it in running order. This is such a great feeling—it’s really awesome to race some of the toughest competition that I have ever faced. They were racing clean and racing hard. I can’t talk highly enough about both of (Eriksson and Weckstrom). It just feels great to win the first one of the season.”
Oliver Eriksson, #16 Olsbergs MSE X Forces: “We had quite a long weekend with Olsbergs MSE X Forces—the crew stayed up all night fixing my car. And I don’t know what to say—we just weren’t quite there in the final, but it was a good run.”
Miki Weckstrom, #45 Olsbergs MSE X Forces: “First of all, it’s always nice to be up here. I’m just going to keep working hard. It’s been a very good weekend for us, except for the final, but I am still happy. I’m right up there in the championship battle. Congrats to Cabot, and I am really happy.”
FAST FACTS: A collection of facts from Saturday’s Red Bull Global Rallycross Washington DC, the eighth round of the 2016 GRC Lites season:
- Cabot Bigham earned the first victory of his GRC Lites career during Saturday’s final in Washington DC. The win came in Bigham’s seventh career start, and also marked his third podium finish of 2016.
- Oliver Eriksson finished second on Saturday after qualifying for the pole. Eriksson now has four podiums in the 2016 season.
- Miki Weckstrom’s third place finish was his class-leading fifth podium of 2016 for Olsbergs MSE X Forces. Weckstrom is currently in the midst of a three-race podium streak.
- Travis PeCoy earned a career-best fourth place finish and the first heat victory of his career for the AF Racing Team.
- Sandra Hultgren made the first final of her GRC Lites career in her first start of the season with Olsbergs MSE X Forces. Hultgren was making her second start in the series after debuting in last year’s season finale in Las Vegas.
- Only four drivers have made it to every Lites main event this year: Weckstrom, Bigham, Eriksson, and Conner Martell.
UNOFFICIAL DRIVER POINTS:
- Cabot Bigham, 307
- Oliver Eriksson, 286
- Miki Weckstrom, 280
- Conner Martell, 234
- Christian Brooks, 191
- Tanner Whitten, 165
- Alejandro Fernandez, 143
- Travis PeCoy, 124
- Alex Keyes, 118
- Collete Davis, 94
- Parker Chase, 85
- Harry Gottsacker, 85
- Colin Braun, 62
- Trenton Estep, 57
- Blake “Bilko” Williams, 55
- Preston Murray, 33
- Jon Bennett, 27
- Sandra Hultgren, 19
- Cole Keatts, 14
- Nur Ali, 3
Photo credit: Larry Chen