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GRC Points Breakdown: New Hampshire Motor Speedway

Image via X Games Facebook

X Games saw the first change in the points lead of this Global Rallycross Championship season, as Marcus Gronholm’s injury-induced absence from the event all but handed the lead to Olsbergs MSE teammate Tanner Foust. Gronholm won’t be racing in New Hampshire on July 14, giving Foust a chance to extend his championship lead, but with a little bit of luck, a few other drivers could challenge for the top spot. Here are some of the points scenarios coming into #NHMSGRC:

  • Foust’s second row start in the X Games final hindered his ability to extend a major lead on Gronholm on the way to his second straight GRC title. Instead of walking out of Los Angeles with a maximum of 58 points, he could only manage 48 due to his sixth place finish. He will retain the points lead no matter what if he finishes first or second in Loudon.
  • Gronholm’s accident during Saturday practice kept him out of Sunday’s event with a definite concussion, and stuck at 43 points after sweeping the entire first two rounds of the schedule. He won’t be racing at Loudon, but if he was, he would need to win his heat and the final to regain the points lead, and Foust would need to finish third, fourth with a heat win, or worse.
  • Rhys Millen finds himself third in points after two consecutive fourth place finishes at Texas and Los Angeles, though he hasn’t shown the speed to make it to a podium quite yet. If he wins his heat and the final, he can take the points lead if Foust finishes seventh, eighth with a heat win, or worse.
  • Brian Deegan has two consecutive third place finishes after mechanical failure torpedoed his chances at Charlotte. If the four-time X Games rally medalist wins his heat and the final, he can take the points lead if Foust finishes 12th or worse; and if Millen finishes third with or without a heat win or worse.
  • Samuel Hubinette is tied with Deegan in points, though he’d be much better off if the series hadn’t been forced to throw a red flag on the first attempt at the final at X Games. After taking second place in that start, Hubinette’s car was damaged in the third and last attempt at the final, and he fell to ninth. The scenarios are thus the same for him; of course, each driver need only finish higher than the other to break the tie in points.

Technically, David Binks (32 points), Stephan Verdier (31 points) and Ken Block (28 points) could also come out of New Hampshire with the points lead, but the scenarios get even more complex from there, and some of the scenarios listed above aren’t even realistic given the dominance of Foust and Gronholm in their Ford Fiestas. Then again, strange things seem bound to happen in the GRC, where it seems like every driver is prone to making a major mistake at some point or another over the course of the season.

– Chris Leone

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