Lydden Hill boasts bumper grid to open 2023 5 Nations BRX campaign
Lydden Hill plays host to the opening rounds of the Motorsport UK British Rallycross Championship 5 Nations Trophy this Easter Bank Holiday Weekend [April 8 & April 10], where a bumper line-up of cars will do battle on the new-look Lydden rallycross layout.
The historic rallycross venue was evolved for 2022, with the addition of a new banked gravel turn and spectacular jump. This weekend no less than eight former Supercar event-winners will commence the 2023 season in a range of machinery, amid a very strong field in the headline Supercar category.
One of the most recent winners and the reigning champion, Patrick O’Donovan, returns to defend his crown driving a Peugeot 208 built by the Hansen Motorsport team in Sweden, in which he will make his maiden start this weekend. O’Donovan is one of three former champions on the grid, including six-time title-winner Julian Godfrey, who has switched from his venerable Ford Fiesta to a LD Motorsports-built Citroen DS3 for 2023, and 2007 title-winner Ollie O’Donovan, who returns with his unique Proton Iriz RX Supercar.
Nitro Rallycross driver Oliver Bennett claimed his first-ever outright rallycross win at Lydden Hill last season on Easter Saturday, before repeating the performance on Easter Monday with his Xite Racing Mini RX and returns the grid this weekend, as does three-time Supernational title-winner Tristan Ovenden (Citroen DS3), who also became an event-winner at Mondello Park last season. 2021 round winners Roberts Vitols (Citroen C4) and Jack Thorne (Peugeot 208) embark on a fresh campaign having sat out last season, Vitols racing in the new Teams’ Championship for Team Duo alongside Julian Godfrey, taking on Team RX Racing’s father-son O’Donovan line up. Steve Hill, returning once again with his unique Mitsubishi Evo X is also a former round-winner, while Michael Sellar (Citroen DS3), Michael Boak (Skoda Fabia), Dom Flitney (Volvo C30) and Roger Thomas (Ford Fiesta) all have a raft of rallycross experience.
For the first time in British Rallycross history, electric cars will also join the fold in the Supercar category this weekend, Belgian star Viktor Vranckx racing in the event with his FIA RX2e machine, fresh off the back of winning the RX2e title last season, while Steve and Jake Harris will race SH Racing’s all-electric Mini RX, having tested the car recently. Unlike Vranckx’s spaceframe machine, the Harris Mini is based on a Prodrive-developed WRC and World RX chassis, fitted with a three-motor 4WD 612bhp powertrain developed by Austrian firm STARD.
Complementing the Supercar grid in the double-header weekend at Lydden Hill will be an eclectic mix of cars, especially in the Supernational division with its relatively open regulations for two-wheel-drive machines, where Polish driver Slawomir Woloch starts as favourite with his BMW M3.
In the Junior category for young drivers in single-specification 1300cc Suzuki Swifts, five drivers return to the series with previous experience, while five newcomers look to learn and evolve in their racing careers. With no returning champion, it’s all to play for in the junior class for the stars of the future.
The single-make categories for adult competitors, ALL4 Mini for four-wheel-drive machines, BMW Mini, Swift Sport and RX150 buggy will provide bumper-to-bumper racing throughout the weekend, where in ALL4 Mini reigning Junior RX Champion Max Langmaid will be looking to cause a stir against more experienced drivers like 2022 title-winner David Bell, while Dave Bellerby enters a new season as the reigning BMW Mini champion, the same accolade held by Max Weatherly in the Swift Sport class and Ben Hardy in RX150 buggies.
In the Retro Rallycross Championship, the category celebrating the rich history of rallycross, a highly-eclectic range of cars in the Super Retro and Retro Rallycross sub categories – based on engine capacity – will add an action-packed nostalgic element to the event, the class including reigning champions John Cross (Super Retro) and Tony Lynch (Retro Rallycross), Lynch having also scooped the overall Retro honours last year.
- See full entry list below.
- Saturday Tickets: https://bit.ly/5nbrxrnd1
- Monday Tickets: https://bit.ly/5nbrxrnd2