Global Rallycross Series Flops on Opening Day

The opening round of the 2012 Global Rallycross at Charlotte Motor Speedway was dominated by Sweden’s Marcus Gronholm, who defeated his rival Tanner Foust in a final that quickly became a wild frenzy. Gronholm was able to avoid the carnage on his way to victory lane and after his victory commented, “The win means a lot as we are building up the GRC in the states, I hope it will gain more interest with new tracks and new ideas.”

Perhaps the bigger story emerging from Saturday’s race was the lack of positive feedback in the United States. Tour organizers felt holding the 2012 GRC events on the heels of Nascar events would help increase the viewership and interest. But in the process, some of the critical elements of Rallycross may have been diminished.

Traditionally, Rallycross is held on mixed terrains such as asphalt, dirt, and gravel, but Nacsar only allowed the use of the track, with strict instructions to stay off the infield. GRC also eliminated their signature dirt-to-dirt gap jump, opting instead for what was essentially a large speed bump.

Moving forward, GRC officials may need to reassess their partnership with Nascar, considering whether mainstream viewership is worth sacrificing the spirit and appeal of the sport.

Complete results from Charlotte.
1. Marcus Gronholm
2. Tanner Foust
3. Stephan Verdier
4. Andy Scott
5. Samuel Hubinette
6. Rhys Millen
7. David Binks
8. Dave Mirra
9. Travis Pastrana
10.Toomas Heikkinen
11. Bucky Lasek
12. Sverre Isachsen
13. Tim Rooney
14. Patrick Moro
15. Ken Block
16. Brian Deegan
17. Richard Burton