For any racer who started his career on two wheels, any win at the legendary Glen Helen Raceway is special. For Nitro Rallycross founder Travis Pastrana, taking his first win at the track in the series he established takes the significance up a notch.
The Subaru Motorsports USA driver became the first-ever NRX driver to win back-to-back races, backing up his perfect event at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park last weekend with another heat win and main event victory in California. Taking the holeshot from teammate and ERX Motor Park winner Scott Speed and Go Nitro Star Car driver Andreas Bakkerud, Pastrana led all eight laps of the race as all three Vermont SportsCar-built Subaru WRX STIs locked out the podium.
The win, coupled with a difficult weekend for Timmy and Kevin Hansen, turned the championship battle on its head going into the season finale from The FIRM in Florida in two weeks’ time. Both Hansens would need to come through the LCQ if they wanted to make the main event; Timmy was successful, but Kevin wasn’t so lucky after taking contact from Liam Doran. Doran crossed the line first, but after being assessed a penalty for the incident, Latvian driver Ronalds Baldins would end up with the win. Timmy Hansen would later finish fifth in the feature, between the Olsbergs MSE Honda Civic of Kevin Eriksson and GRX Loenbro Hyundai i20 of Steve Arpin.
Pastrana’s points lead, therefore, sits at 182, seven ahead of Speed and 17 ahead of Timmy Hansen. With a maximum of 54 points on the line, every other driver has been eliminated from title contention.
In the NRX Next class, Casper Jansson rode back-to-back victories in the two finals to what is now a 15-point lead over Enlunds Motorsport teammate Martin Enlund. George Megennis and Sage Karam completed the podium on Saturday, while Karam and Enlund were second and third on Sunday.
Unlike the past three events at ERX, Wild Horse Pass, and Glen Helen, all of which featured courses built out of short course off-road tracks, the December 4-5 season finale from The FIRM will feature a return to more pavement. As always, the action can be seen live on Peacock on the Saturday and Sunday of race weekend, with a television re-air on NBCSN in the following week.